Meena's Dream a play produced and performed by Anu Yadav with music from Anjna Swaminathan, Rajna Swaminathan and Sam McCormally just ended its world premiere at the Round House Forum Theatre in Silver Spring, Maryland yesterday (January 18th 2013). The organizers have a Indiegogo project that will help them take Meena's Dream on the road and produce a video.
The play is about 9 year old Meena who dreams that the Hindu God, Lord Krishna appears in her dreams and asks her to fight worry - "The Worry Machine" which will help her and her mother who is sick and trying to make a living working extra shifts. Meena like many kids of her age is a dreamer and, luckily, a good reader as well. I love the introduction of Star Wars/Star Trek like humor. The call from the President of the United Federation is nicely introduced as Madam President (Hillary for 2016 campaigners please note!) ;)
Anu Yadav has brilliantly meshed the intimacies of a South Asian American household culture into the play. Thousands of School kids of South Asian origin who take "dal" and "roti" to lunch will be familiar with the "Eww! Gross! What is that?" phrase from unfamiliar curious minds at the school lunch table.
Struggling house-holds, bills, eviction notices, the struggle to pay for medicines by a single-mom are well depicted in the play. School bus, playground conversations, the phone calls to family touched my heart.
The play ends with Meena winning the war against the Worry Machine and life changes and things start becoming positive. A pharmacy staffer helps with medicine, for Meena's mother, taking Meena's art as payment signifying a turn in their life. Meena's mom makes plans to reunite with her family.
The play brings up a philosophy of the #PowerOfDreams that I firmly believe in. Putting worries aside will help life turn positive. The play highlights the struggle of families without insurance and medical benefits.
The music by Anjna, Rajna and Sam was fantastic. They entertained the audience with South Indian Classical music even before the “curtains” for the play went up. Patrick Crowley directed the world premiere at Forum Theatre
The Indiegogo project MEENA'S DREAM National Tour & Future Life has already raised $7739 with a goal of $16k. Check it out.
A shout out to the Forum Theatre, they reserve pay as you please tickets for every show so as to include everyone if regular ticket prices was a problem. It's easily accessible in downtown Silver Spring and a great venue for theatre going in the DC area.