History attests that in 1551, an elephant made the journey from Lisbon to Vienna. Solomon the elephant and his mahout had already made a long sea voyage from Goa and spent a couple of years standing about in a pen in Lisbon, before setting off for Valladolid as a present from the king to the Archduke, who travelled with him to Italy by ship and across the Alps to Vienna. In the play, loosely based on Nobel laureate Jose Saramago’s ‘The Elephant’s Journey’, Solomon and his mahout Subhro proceed through various landscapes at an unhurried pace, attended by various functionaries and military men, and meeting along the way with villagers and townsfolk who variously interpret the sudden enigma of an elephant entering their lives. The novel – The Elephant’s Journey – by the late José de Sousa Saramago was published in 2008, and now five years after the Marathi play we wish to adapt the play into a Hindi play, Gajab Kahani. The novel had garnered rave reviews, not only for its interesting historic documentation but also for the bluntness and rawness with which it portrayed the paucity of human emotions. And that is the idea that has us to adapt the novel in a manner in which they could stay faithful to the original story that made it a publishing phenomenon in Europe.

Aasakta Pune 

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