Exploring the life of Karna


Chandigarh, November 16

Performer, writer and scholar Mahmood Farooqui presented “Dastan-e-Karn Az Mahabharata” under the aegis of the Elsewhere Foundation at the Rock Garden amphitheatre here this evening.

Mahmood Farooqui’s “Dastan-e-Karn Az Mahabharata”, a retelling of the life of the great warrior Karna, is based on Urdu, Persian, Hindi and Sanskrit sources.

Exploring the life of Karna, from his birth to his death, the production unearthed the warrior’s angst, and most importantly, his tragedy. A powerful narrative that resonates even in times today, “Dastan-e-Karn Az Mahabharata” is a must watch not only for its sheer brilliance, but also its ability to make the viewer seek and find contemporary motifs in an ancient story.

Dastangoi is a form of Urdu storytelling, performed by either one or two people, combining multiple elements, including poetry and music to tell a story.

The storyteller crossed between Hindu mythology and medieval history with ease as it combined shlokas from the Mahabharata and Urdu poets such as Mir and Ghalib. The audience sat through the cold weather in the open theatre to enjoy the art form.

“Dastan-e Karn Az Mahabharata” is a profound meditation on the life of Mahabharata’s famous warrior Karna. Dastangoi has been revived and reinvented by Farooqui with his uncle Shamsur Rahman Faruqi, an Indian poet and Urdu critic. Farooqui also co-directed the critically acclaimed film “Peepli Live” with his wife Anusha Rizvi.