The British Asian Theatre Project was a 4-year research project funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council that documented the presence of South Asians on the British stage, from magicians of the s to new generations of British Asians. Its duration was from October until March The research team, Graham Ley , Dr. Sarah Dadswell, Stephen Hodge and Jerri Daboo aimed to provide a critical and documentary history of this major aspect of the modern and contemporary British theatre, with particular emphasis on the period from , when Tara Arts was founded by Jatinder Verma.
Ask anyone in the business to name an Asian theatre company and they will come up with Tara or Tamasha. The more informed may add Kali or Moti Roti. After that, they are stuck. It would be nice to think that the influence of Tara and Tamasha is partly responsible.
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It's a rare instance of self-awareness. Behud Beyond Belief , which puts on stage the real-life drama behind Bhatti's previous work, Behzti, has come to London amid a predictable flurry of comment about artistic freedom, censorship and religious sensitivities; but often fails to address the very issues it raises. Highly politicised and overshadowed by the furore that surrounded Behzti — which ignited riots in Birmingham six years ago, forcing the author into hiding — Behud, to me, fails to reflect the experience of being both British and Asian.