Prospero is a white-haired Swami,and Ariel is green,airy and Indian. In France-based travelling troupe,Footsbarn Theatres version of William Shakespeares The Tempest,titled Indian Tempest,the land of the Bard meets the magic of Kerala,the sea and fishermen. Footsbarn is well-known for its nomadic existence (it was born in a barn in Cornwall),performing in tents in small towns and adding the colours of circus to its theatrical productions. The group has been travelling to India since 1994.
Its latest production,about the sorceror Prospero,who lives on an island with his daughter Miranda,his servant sprite Ariel,and the villainous Caliban,the son of a witch,is interpreted as a disturbing comment on power and decline,forgiveness and regret,and ignorance and wisdom among others.
The troupe trained with Abhinaya Theatre Village in Trivandrum,Kerala,earlier this year and the cast of the play includes five Indian actors and musicians. For a play that stands on two continents,Europe and Asia,it is fitting that only 30 per cent of communication is through the spoken word. Indian Tempest has travelled to Portugal and an Indian tour is on the cards next month besides performances at the Globe Theatre in London.