Theatre for Education and Social Transformation

1 year PG Diploma programme
for working professionals
2015 start

Shiv Nadar University 

made in response to the horrific gang rape and tragic death of Jyoti Pande on a moving bus on 
Dec. 16, 2012 


                                           WALK, Jaipur Litt. Festival, Jan. 21, 2013

                                                   More than 12, 000 hits on youtube.....

About Maya....
From Kaite O'Reilly
Winner of Ted Hughes Award for New Works in Poetry 2011

"The fantastic theatre maker, Kathakali performer, teacher and Theatre in Education practitioner Maya Krishna Rao. 
I am working in Berlin, as a fellow of Freie University’s International Research Centre: Interweaving Performance Cultures. Earlier this week I attended a talk and presentation by Maya Krishna Rao, whose words on process and creativity were illuminating and exhilarating...
Her performance work is improvised, working often alone with a video camera, and music. What sparks her when starting out is the tension between the small and the big. The small might be a tiny event, or a prop or object which is of use; the big is an historical landscape, and it is the tension between these, disparate things coming together, which can surprise and create the initial spark...

As she described this process, I was struck by the way she stayed true to the tasks she had set herself, and trusted both herself and the process, even though she was in the midst of creating it."

posted on Sept. 14, 2012


An unstoppable woman attempts to make her life more meaningful, and yours, vicariously. She is an expert on everything- from food, politics to inner peace. It’s another thing that some themes get a little jumbled in her head, sometimes. But the final score is always philosophical.
The show has episodes – short, sharp, affectionate, sometimes moving glimpses of the urban citizen’s idiosyncrasies and obsessions.
The artist, through characters that change with lightning speed- much like in a Hindi film- takes the audience on a roller coaster ride that goes from the spiritual journey of an NRI jogger to the car- obsessed travails of a culinary expert on television to an incomparable audio visual ‘autobiographical tale’…and more.

dance theatre

There are several strands that have crossed and re-crossed in the making of this piece.  On stage we see an actor  in search of a character, Ravana. Why is she so attracted to him while all the world considers him evil? Is it to do with the performer's  attraction to a form – Kathakali - a form that depicts Ravana in high scale and grandeur?  Every time the actor dips into the ‘world’ of Kathakali she comes out with a further revelation of Ravana…. 
There are so many versions of the story. According to one, Ravana never died, but instead took the form of a bird and made the forest his home. In another version, Sita is actually Ravana’s daughter, but was given away at birth as he was warned that she would be the cause of his death. So, is the Ramayana actually a story of longing -  of a man / father for his lover/daughter. It’s the archetypal story of the lover who is also sibling / parent / child, so familiar in the Greek tradition – Eudipus, Elektra, Jocasta...

Sound design Samar Grewal

Lights Rajesh Singh
Created and performed by Maya Krishna Rao


based on short story by Chimamanda Ngozi Addichie
Sound Design Samar Grewal

This is a solo performance around a theme that holds universal appeal. It’s a non - stop boxing match between a mother and daughter, exciting and moving. The actor switches between both characters. With music to accompany her, she talks, sings, raps. Mrs. Njoku’s daughter, Sochienne, has just returned home to Lagos, having completed her studies in America. She has changed. Living in the west has given her seemingly new values but has also brought her close to her roots, in strange ways. The mother, however is ‘western’ in a post – colonial sort of way and so the stage is set for a clash!

 US tour - residency, performances, talks, workshops in 5 colleges and universities across America, Oct - Nov., 2013