ABOUT THE SHOW
Borders in a Bedroom centers around a couple, Maya and Imran, and how deeply entrenched views about the complexities of the outside world can permeate even the most intimate of relationships. It compels the characters to address challenging sociopolitical issues pertaining to racial and religious disparities, philosophical differences, nationalism, and ultimately, love. Borders in a Bedroom demands from its protagonists a raw, visceral honesty about what they want and their feelings for each other. Set across one evening in New York City, the play brings to life with brimming heat, charged emotion, and sustained vigor, the conversations most of us would never dare to have in our lifetimes.
PLAYWRIGHT & ACTOR - SHIVALI BHAMMER
Shivali was born and brought up in London, where, despite having a Western upbringing, she was familiar with Hindu shlokas and mantras at the age of 3. She went on to graduate in Economics and Philosophy and embarked on an investment-banking career as a summer analyst at Goldman Sachs. She has written for the Financial Times, the Orange County Register and other prominent newspapers and publications. At 22, Shivali was signed by Sony Music BMG and was commended for her innovation in creating a niche market of modern contemporary bhajans (devotional music). She began active involvement in music with her producer Arjun Coomaraswamy at the age of 15, and together created what would become “The Bhajan Project,” an array of devotional songs coupled with a fresh modern sound comprising of mainly acoustic guitar and Eastern influences. Shivali deeply desired to bring bhajans to the forefront of society and has since then become U.K.’s youngest and biggest Asian devotional singer. The Bhajan Project was nominated for best debut and best fusion album at the Global Indian Music awards. Shivali then went onto release “Urban Temple” by Eros Music in 2012. This album went on to reach no. 1 on the iTunes World Chart. The press have often referred to Shivali as the “devotional diva,” and she has been featured across newspapers in India (The Times of India, Mumbai Mirror, DNA Mumbai, to name but a few ) and papers and magazines across Asia, Europe and the U.S. The young star has also assisted the BBC radio in providing insight into Hindu festivals and was featured in the BBC3 documentary on the Kumbh Mela. The devotional singer was awarded a First in her Kathak (classical Indian dance) diploma, studying under Abhay Shankar Mishra at the prestigious Bhartiya Vidya Bhavan. She is also a Latin dancer and received distinction in all ballet grades 1-8. She has a diploma in acting from the New York Film Academy, has accomplished Grade 6 in Speech & Drama by the Guildhall School of Speech and Drama, and is currently studying acting under Bruce Ornstein in New York. Her recent work involves playing the main role as a comedian in the ‘Love Actually’ play in Shaw Theatre in 2014. Shivali is also currently working on her first English album ‘State 108,’ which she wrote herself and will release later in 2015 in association with MatchBox Records. At her core she remains a performer, eager to take her audience to the deepest corners of their souls. She has performed at distinguished venues around the world, for the London Mayor and in the Houses of Parliament and in front of audiences as large as 50,000. Whether she be dancing, singing or acting Shivali is remembered fondly for her charm, humour and powerful presence.
DIRECTOR - CELINE ROSENTHAL
CELINE ROSENTHAL (Director) is an NYU Tisch alum, Tony Nominated Producer (Leap of Faith, Seminar), and graduate of The New School for Drama's MFA Directing program. She is a founding member of Neela Theatre Project in Mumbai, and a proud Musical Theatre Factory Board Member. Her work has been seen at NYMF, New York City Center, MMAC, 54 Below, 59E59, and in the Broadway's Future Songbook Series at Lincoln Center. Recent Projects include Rajiv Joseph's Gruesome Playground Injuries, David Grieg's Yellow Moon, Bekah Brunstetter's Little Man. For more information, please visit: http://celinerosenthal.nyc
ASSISTANT DIRECTOR - Benjamin-Ernest Abraham
Benjamin-Ernest Abraham (Assistant Director). Ben is new to the New York theatre scene and is ecstatic to be assistant directing Borders in a Bedroom. Recent directing credits include: Ant (Manhattan Repertory Theatre), Waiting for Moondog (ESPA Detention Series), Old School (Step1 Theatre Project 24-Hour Play Festival), Cursed (ESPA Detention Series), Crave (Loyola University Maryland). He would like to thank Celine Rosenthal for being a wonderful mentor and friend.
STAGE MANAGER - RADHIKA MENAWAT
Radhika Menawat (Stage Manager) is a multitalented dancer who started training in the classical Indian dance form of Bharatnatyam at the age of 4 from internationally recognized Ms. Chaula Thacker. In 2006, after many years of rigorous training and dedication, she completed her Bharatnatyam Arangentram from the Chauladevi Institute of Dance and Yoga, in Michigan. Prior to moving to New York City, she continued to dance with her dance troupe Nadanta and stage managed their annual summer production. In New York City Radhika is a dancer and choreographer for Ajna Dance Company. She has also performed and competed in US and Canada including the Super Bowl XL multicultural show entitled “Nations in Rhythm Detroit!” She uses her classical foundation as a base for her expressive and energetic dance.
ACTOR - SHEZI SARDAR
Shezi Sardar is an actor, producer, and lawyer based in New York City. Having obtained a J.D. from Emory University and a certificate from the University of Paris-Sorbonne in international commercial arbitration, Shezi embarked on a dual acting and legal career, serving as one of the youngest, nominated board members of the International Trade Committee under the NYC Bar Association. Shezi can be seen in guest star network roles on Law & Order: SVU, The Mysteries of Laura, Elementary, The Blacklist, and Madam Secretary, and numerous independent films. He was selected for the highly competitive NBC Scene Showcase in 2013, and is executive producer and lead actor on a multi-episode, original comedy series focused on the tech startup world. He's trained with The William Esper Studio, The Barrow Group, and HB Studio.