Performing The Komagata Maru: Theatre And the Work of Memory comes to the Surrey Arts Centre stage May 9, exploring how and why the Komagata Maru incident has been remembered by Canadian Playwrights.
The event will explore three plays written about the incident by Canadian authors: Sadhu Binning and Surrey playwright Sukhwant Hundal’s “Sumundari Sher nal Takar” (which will be in Punjabi), Sharon Pollock’s “The Komagata Maru Incident” (in English), and Ajmer Rode’s “Komagata Maru” (in Punjabi). Surtitles will be shown for each, making the presentation entirely bilingual.
A single program will integrate sections of the three plays to explore how and why we remember the Komagata Maru, and how the creative arts augment and enhance the traditional historical archive. Students in the Department of Theatre and Film at UBC will perform short selections from Pollock’s play, while members of the Surrey-based theatre group Rangmanch Punjabi Theatre will perform selections from the two Punjabi plays.
The performance, as well as the ongoing art show Ruptures in Arrival at the Surrey Art Gallery, mark the 100-year anniversary of the Komagata Maru ship’s arrival off the coast of Vancouver. It was May 1914 when a ship carrying over 350 would-be immigrants from South Asia was turned away from Vancouver and its passengers refused entry to Canada.
Tickets ($10) for the May 9 play, are available at 604-501-5566 or tickets.surrey.ca