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Dipika Guha.

The Subtext: Dipika Guha Is a Seeker

This month Brian talks to the ‘Yoga Play’ author about the absurdism of real life and how her globally forged voice meets contemporary American life.

Each month Brian James Polak (he/him) talks to playwrights about the things usually left unsaid. In conversations that dive into life’s muck, we learn what irks, agitates, motivates, inspires and—ultimately—what makes writers tick.

On this episode, Brian talks to Dipika Guha, an L.A. based playwright was born in Calcutta and raised in Russia, India, and the United Kingdom. Her plays include Yoga Play (South Coast Rep, Gateway, Moxie Theatre, SF Playhouse, and this recent co-production), The Art of Gaman (Theatre 503 London, Relentless Award semifinalist), and Unreliable (Kansas City Rep).

Dipika talks about how her parents, whom she describes as “seekers,” moved the family across countries and continents, but not randomly: Her father worked as a tea taster, which motivated him to live in, and bring his family to, some of the world’s most tea-loving locations. 

The first move to England, when Dipika was a young child, left much to be desired, as her Indian immigrant family experienced all the challenges of living in a mainly white country where they could barely speak the language. Despite her struggles there, she had what might have been a seminal experience, performing in a play just before the family relocated in India.

Listening to her talk about her life and offer her thoughts about the future, it’s clear that Dipika, like her parents, is a seeker too. She followed opportunity where it would lead, resulting in her travel to the U.S. for the first time with a fellowship at Harvard University. It was there, in a playwriting class with Sam Marks, that she wrote her first play and a future began to present itself.

This episode can also be found here.

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