"The production gives a powerful and necessary platform to the many hundreds of thousands of women ... The stories of the Birangona women have been shrouded in shame and secrecy for too long and it is time for them to be told "
" Gazi is a compelling performer and she holds nothing back. This is an illuminating and affecting piece."
INTERNATIONAL TOUR 2014
UK TOUR 2014 - 2016
Wilton's Music Hall
Grange Arts Centre
SOAS, University of London
George Wood Theatre
Samina Luthfa + Leesa Gazi
Set, Costume + Animation by
UK + International Tours
Made with support from
BIRANGONA WOMEN OF WAR
The year is 1971; the war of independence tears through Bangladesh, and no part of the country is left untouched. Amidst this unrest and violence, Moryom still remembers the calming details of her life before: the taste of tamarind, the smell of her mother, holding her husband’s hand. But the Kalbosheki Storm is coming.
In their small village, Moryom and her family wait fearfully for its arrival. Every day they hide from the army in the pond behind
their house, while across the country women are disappearing from streets and homes. When the storm finally hits, it will tear away everything.
Birangona means ‘Brave Woman’.
In Bangladesh's 1971 War of Independence from Pakistan, more than 200,000 women and girls were systematically raped and tortured.
After Bangladesh gained independence, these women were excluded by a society where rape is seen as a source of shame. They were silenced, ostracised and forgotten - we want to help break this silence. The piece uses physical performance, choreography and animation interwoven with films of the real Birangona women's accounts to tell their stories.
In August 2013, Komola Collective travelled to Bangladesh to film Birangona women's firsthand accounts and produce a research and development (R&D) theatrical piece based on their footage. We returned to the UK to develop the piece further, and toured the final production in the UK in the spring of 2014, before returning to tour it in Bangladesh, where the play was originally created.