Thirty Days in September, is a grim tale, it is dark and shocking. The betrayal of a niece's physicality by her uncle at a very young age is a sorrow tale. The niece within a few years forgetting the thin line between relationships comes to enjoy this sexual experience. The mother remains silent when she sees her daughter finding enjoyment thus, and the former turns to God so that that helps the daughter. The betrayal is sad, and the mother' silence and not trying to confront the issue is sadder than the betrayal.
As it turns out mother herself was sexually abused as a child by this same brother and had to keep it a secret. When Shanta's perpetrator-brother visits his sister, both victims are triggered - each in her own way.
"Once we were talking about a rape case that was in the papers. You said something about children also not being safe...Then I told you about what happened to me. But you changed the subject...That time I wondered if it was I or did I imagine it all? Surely not. No, it did happen."
While selecting a text to stage one should either look for the depth of the subject it deals with or its relevance to the society – I think I have read it somewhere. Superb that would be if both of the things could be found in the same text! Yes, I have found both of these things in Mahesh Dattani's plays and that's why I picked Thirty Days in September. Such plays in fact raise questions to the skills of a director. I, as a theatre director, am always tempted to stage the play that questions me and the society that I belong to.
I am grateful to Plan Nepal and the Embassy of India for their support and to all my friends who have contributed to make this staging a success.