Who Inspired Mahatma Gandhi? An award-winning Play arrives in the UK in January 2018
1,032 Shows across 310 cities worldwide
The story of Mahatma Gandhi’s non-violent struggle for the independence of India is well known, together with his ideologies of truth and compassion. He inspired leaders such as Martin Luther King Jr. and Nelson Mandela, and his values of non-violence and love had a global impact on millions of people and shaped the history of entire nations. But who inspired Mahatma Gandhi?
The hugely successful, award-winning play ‘Yugpurush – Mahatma’s Mahatma’, reveals the untold story of the man and the inspiration behind the Mahatma – his spiritual guide Shrimad Rajchandra. Yugpurush reveals a soul-stirring depiction of the genesis of a Mahatma, from a young Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi. With over 1,000 shows performed in 12 months across India, UK, USA, Canada, the Middle East, Africa, Far East and Australasia, Yugpurush has won the hearts of audiences from diverse backgrounds, ages, and communities, resulting in standing ovations and a raft of awards.
Coinciding with Mahatma Gandhi’s 70th death anniversary, having completed 1,032 shows across 310 cities worldwide in just one year, Yugpurush will arrive in the UK from 19th January to 4th February 2018 for a special tour in English with more than 10 performances across London, Oxford, Birmingham, Manchester, and Leicester. This UK Tour of Yugpurush is supported by the High Commission of India (London) and will be one of the concluding highlights of the successful UK-India Year of Culture.
Tushar Gandhi, the great-grandson of Mahatma Gandhi urged that the play is taken all over the world, at a time when the message of non-violence is more pertinent than ever. “These two greats have sown in us the seeds of becoming better human beings. It’s now upon us to irrigate it with our own experiences…”
Guiding Force Behind a Leader
A guiding force shaped Mahatma Gandhi’s thought process and prepared him as a leader. Yugpurush brings to light that guiding force – Shrimad Rajchandra. “The more I consider His life and His writings, the more I consider Him to have been the best Indian of His times.” – Mahatma Gandhi on Shrimad Rajchandra in a Letter to HSL Polak, April 26 1909.
Gandhi met Shrimad for the first time in Mumbai, India upon his return from England as a barrister in 1891. Despite being only two years older, Shrimad’s inner equipoise, knowledge of the scriptures and enlightening wisdom left a deep-rooted impression on Gandhi, who soon proclaimed Shrimad as his spiritual mentor. Shrimad’s inherent adherence to the principles of truth, non-violence and compassion crystallised into the fundamental tenets of India’s freedom movement which resulted in India’s Independence.
Yugpurush invites the audience to journey through Mahatma Gandhi’s internal and external advances on the spiritual path through his interactions and letters from Shrimad Rajchandra. Through various incidents, the play highlights the values of expanding one’s capacity to love and work for others selflessly, respecting diversity, supporting truth, fostering trust, and building lasting communities. This play highlights a powerful experience of looking within, upholding truth and fearlessness, as well as transforming character and consciousness. The legacies of Shrimad and Gandhi continue to offer new paradigms to global peace and human progress.
Awards and Accolades
Yugpurush has taken cities across the world by storm, running to full houses and standing ovations, watched by over 650,000 people. The artistic merits of the play have been endorsed by multiple awards and accolades by the Indian performing arts industry, namely the prestigious Dadasaheb Phalke Excellence Award 2017 for ‘Best Drama’ and the Transmedia Gujarati Screen and Stage Awards for the Best Drama, Best Director and Best Actor in a Supporting Role. The Play gained two entries in the Limca Book of Records which is the Indian equivalent of the Guinness Book of World Records. Firstly, for the most varied languages performed of one play (7), and secondly for the most performances of one play in a single day (10).
Supporting a Charitable Cause
The play supports the construction of Shrimad Rajchandra Hospital in Dharampur, India – a new 250-bed multi-specialty charity hospital for the economically disadvantaged of South Gujarat, which ranks amongst the poorest areas in the state, facing poverty, malnutrition, illiteracy, and lack of health awareness.
2017 marks the 150th birth year of Shrimad Rajchandra. To celebrate this year, ‘Yugpurush – Mahatma’s Mahatma’ has been produced under the guidance of Shrimad Rajchandra’s devotee and the founder of Shrimad Rajchandra Mission Dharampur, Pujya Gurudevshri Rakeshbhai. Pujya Gurudevshri states, “The birth and life of the Great Ones are worth remembering. They awaken our latent strength and kindle the desire to become like them.” The celebrations of the 150th birth anniversary, aim to spread Shrimad Rajchandra’s values of non-violence and truth that shaped Mahatma Gandhi’s beliefs and to share this untold story of a remarkable relationship that influenced the course of world history.
For the schedule of shows, bookings and testimonials, please visit: www.yugpurush.org/uk