More than 150 guests experienced the intense honesty of Sarbpreet Singh’s play Kultar’s Mime, the first play ever performed in Chapman’s Leatherby Libraries, and an emotional opening to the annual Sikhlens Art and Film Festival.
The festival is a showcase for Sikhs from all over the world to join the conversation and celebration of their heritage. The play was staged in the Doy and Dee Henley Reading Room where artwork by Sikh artists such as Amandeep Singh adorned the walls. The play was part of the festive unveiling of the exhibition, titled 1984: Not Forgotten. The exhibition commemorates the thousands of Sikh men, women, and children who died in the genocide in India that year.
Singh’s play honored the lives lost through minimalist scenery, narration, chanting, and passionate prose, the latter of which was based on the poetry Singh wrote in response to the violence of 1984. The appalling, true stories told in the play brought tears to every cheek in the room and received a standing ovation.
After the play, the Sikhlens Board of Trustees also honored Charlene Baldwin, dean of the Leatherby Libraries, with the Sikh Partnership Award for her dedication to teamwork over the years. Later the assembly moved to Chapman’s Fish Interfaith Center for a dinner reception held by Dean Gail Stearns.
The exhibition will be available for viewing in Leatherby Libraries until March 2015.