Information for/from Outsiders: Chronicles from Kashmir has been in development since 2013, as a collaboration between Dr. Nandita Dinesh and the Ensemble Kashmir Theatre Akademi in Srinagar. Chronicles from Kashmir uses Argentine playwright Griselda Gambaro’s (1992) Information for Foreigners as its point of departure; it takes place in the promenade and is site-adaptive -- we've staged it in a two storied building in Kashmir, and in a sprawling theatre workspace in western India. Different scenes take place in different locales and audience members walk around under the supervision of 'Guides' who tell them the route to take.
Chronicles from Kashmir seeks to create a sense of “balance”: between differently positioned voices that emerge when speaking about Kashmir; between differently placed narratives on the “victim”/“perpetrator” spectrum. While there is an inevitable streak of political commentary that runs throughout the work – a political current that cannot be escaped when talking about Kashmir – Chronicles from Kashmir does not espouse any one political ideology. We see ourselves as being artists and educators, using aesthetics and pedagogy to engage audiences with diverse perspectives from/about the Valley.
Chronicles from Kashmir, like any other performance, has its limitations. It can never do justice to all the narratives that compose Kashmir... It's a step, though, a small step toward engaging audiences in stories and experiences that mainstream media might never share with them; a small step toward sparking more educated -- and less polarized -- opinions about what is happening in the region.