Mahabharata Episode 23: Arjuna’s Quest for Divine Weapons

Kirata and Arjuna Story

Kirata and Arjuna Story

Yudhistira realized that to conquer the Kauravas, he needs to have powerful weapons. He sends Arjuna on a quest to acquire divine and powerful weapons from the gods. Arjuna travels far and meets Lord Shiva in a strange circumstance. The pleased lord Shiva fulfils our heroes wish.

Listen to this special episode of the Vana Parva or the Forest Chapter of the Mahabharatas.

Mahabharata Episode 2: Amba’s Plight

Bhishma abducts Amba, Ambika and Ambalika

Bhishma abducts Amba, Ambika and Ambalika

After a long hiatus, we bring to you the fully produced version of the episode 2 of the Stories of Mahabharata Series – Amba’s Plight. In this episode, he learn how Bhisma abducts the three princesses of Kashi, Amba, Ambika and Ambalika by force and brings them to Hastinapur to get them married to his brother Vichitravirya.  Amba declines to marry Vichitravirya. Vichitravirya marries Ambika and Ambalika but dies without leaving an heir. Satyavati then invokes the practice of Niyoga and asks Vyasa to give the Kuru dynasty an heir. Listen to this crucial and exciting episode and share your thoughts with us.

Mahabharata Episode 22: Draupadi’s Argument

Krishna fights Salwa and his Vimana (airship) Sauvanagar

Krishna fights Salwa and his Vimana (airship) Sauvanagar

The Pandavas are now in exile in the forest. One day Krishna visits the Pandavas in the forest to express his solidarity.  He apologizes for not being able to attend the game of dice and stop this misfortune from befalling on the Pandavas. He then tells the Pandavs the story of how he destroyed King Salwa and his airship (Vimana) called Sauvanagar.  Later, Draupadi rebukes Yudhistira for his pacifism and challenges him to fight the Kauravas and win back their Kingdom.  Yudhistira tries to defend his stand, but he feels that time has come to change his course of action. 

Listen to this exciting episode below. Subscribe to our iTunes podcast for a seamless listening experience.

Looking for Support

SQTheaterWorks in collaboration with ECTA is launching my play “TACONIC PARKWAY” in New York at the Thespis Festival 2015. The play will be staged on July 16, 17 and 19 at the Hudson Guild Theater on 441 W, 26th St, New York. The play will be directed by Bruce “Master B” Baek.
We need your support to make this project successful. Please check the campaign details below. Looking forward to your support.

Behind The Scenes of The Mahabharata Podcast

Sudipta Bhawmik and Avi Ziv

Sudipta Bhawmik and Avi Ziv

The other day, Avi and I sat together to chat about what goes on behind the scenes of “The Stories of Mahabharata”  podcast. We talked about how Avi goes about designing the sound for the podcast. And I spoke about the development process of each episode from the writer and performers point. Our objective was to connect to our listeners and to share our process with them. We hope you like it.

Mahabharata Episode 1: Beginnings

Ganga, Devabrata and Shantanu

Ganga, Devabrata and Shantanu

The first episode of the Stories of Mahabharata podcast series has been missing for a long time. The episode was not added because it did not have the production quality that we have been striving for. After a long break, we finally found some time to rerecord this episode and mix the vocal track with sound effects and music to make it at par with the rest of the episodes. We hope you like it.

This episode tells the story of the beginnings of the great saga told by Rishi Vyasa and written by lord Ganesha. The story begins with the narrative of King Shantanu’s marriage with Ganga and the birth of Devabrata. Later we learn how prince Devabrata becomes the great Bhishma because of his “Bhisham” or profound vow – a vow which kickstarts the story of the Mahabharata and the destiny of the Kuru dynasty.

Mahabharata Episode 21: The Exile

The Sun God and Yudhistira

The Sun God and Yudhistira

The Pandavas go into exile as per the conditions of the game.  The Sun god gifts Yudhistira with the magic bowl to feed his followers. Upset by Vidura’s harsh comments Dhritarashtra banishes him. But he couldn’t live without him either. So he calls Vidura back to the palace. Rishi Maitreya visits Hastinapura and curses Duryodhana for his arrogance.

Listen to this episode which marks the beginning of the third chapter of the Mahabharata – The Vana Parva or The Forest Chapter.

Some Thoughts on Anahuta Sandhya

A Scene from Anahuta Sandhya

A Scene from Anahuta Sandhya

Many years ago, I heard a strange story. I was told, that there was this Bengali man (in New York or New Jersey)  who had a weird hobby. Although I don’t know if one can call this a hobby. This man, whenever he went on a trip to Kolkata, would put an advertisement in the matrimonial section of the local Bengali daily looking for a bride for himself. He would then go to a selected number of respondents house to interview the potential bride, enjoy their hospitality and a sumptuous meal.  But his intention was not to marry the girls he saw, for he had a wife and family back here in USA. I struggled hard to comprehend his motive. It was difficult to imagine that this man, who lived in USA, would do this only to enjoy a free meal each evening.  Was this some kind of a perverted adventure?  What was he looking for? What drove him to do such a terrible thing?  Although I am not sure if this story was true at all, but it intrigued me nevertheless. I thought, there must be more to this story than what meets the eyes (or ears). And this thought was the seed for my latest play, “Anahuta Sandhya”. Continue reading

10 Reasons Why You Should Watch Live Theater

10. Theater is the most ancient performing art form.  Support it for its sustenance.

An Uninvited Evening

An Uninvited Evening

Although theater has survived over the ages, survived the onslaught of technology and competition from other media, it still needs support from the audience. So watch a live theater show and help this art form survive.

9.   Theater art is ephemeral. If you miss it, you may not get another chance. 

       A theater performance is born each day on the stage, and it dies on the stage. The next day, a new show is born. To catch this spontaneity, you must watch live theater. Video recordings of plays can only serve archival purpose, but it cannot replace live viewing. Continue reading

Mahabharata Episode 20: One Last Game

The Pandavas going into exile

The Pandavas going into exile

Duryodhana was not happy when Dhritarashtra returned the Pandavas their kingdom and all the wealth they had lost in the game of dice to Shakuni. So he and Shakuni came up with another plan. They invited Yudhistira back to Hastinapura and challenged him to play one last game of dice. But this time, the wager was different. It was proposed, whoever loses the game will have to go into exile in the forests for a period of twelve long years. After the twelve years of exile, they will have to stay in hiding for one more year. And in the thirteenth year, if anyone found them, they would have to go into exile for twelve more years.
But will Yudhistira accept this challenge knowing well that it was impossible to beat Shakuni in the game of dice? Or would he walk out to save himself and his brothers from this impending doom?

Listen to this exciting episode by clicking the link below.
You can also subscribe to the podcast on your smartphone or computer  from http://bhawmik.com/mahabharata.