wed 26/02/2020

Behud (Beyond Belief), Soho Theatre | reviews, news & interviews

Behud (Beyond Belief), Soho Theatre

Behud (Beyond Belief), Soho Theatre

Writer's playful but impassioned response to riotous religious controversy

Behud: Chetna Pandya as a playwright caught in a dilemmaRobert Day

In December 2004, Gurpreet Kaur Bhatti’s play Behzti (Dishonour) caused riots when it was staged at Birmingham Rep. It concerned the (fictional) story of a child rape in a gurdwara (a Sikh temple) and the theatre, in a well-intentioned but misguided act, invited local Sikh leaders to a preview. They asked for changes to be made (relocating the play to a community centre), Bhatti refused, the play went ahead as she wrote it, riots ensued and violent threats were made. She went into hiding and the play was cancelled after just a few performances.

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