A partnership among the U S Consulate General, Theater Alliance (Washington, DC), Contact Base (Kolkata) and twenty participants from the U S, India, Bangladesh and Nepal facilitated a residency workshop on inclusivity, the outcome of which, A Global I.D.E.A., graced the South Lawn of Victoria Memorial for half an hour on November 3. Presented open-air, it naturally drew curious onlookers drifting in from the thousands of sightseers that throng Victoria daily, and opened the possibility of this space as a new performance venue for selected small groups, attracting uncommitted viewers to the power of unticketed theatre, as Badal Sircar understood so well.

In terms of content, the message of the acronym—Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Accessibility—played out through several brief and simple improvised scenarios, practising linguistic diversity too, the four nationalities delivering their lines in languages of their own fluency: Bengali, English, Hindi, Nepali. Dramaturgically, director Raymond Caldwell should tackle the challenges of a fuller-length production. Wishful thinking made me suggest that the initiative (under the American Arts Envoy programme) could expand its borders to embrace Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bhutan—and maybe Afghanistan and Myanmar as well, if we dream of an ideal south Asia. Every such artistic gathering helps to unite people otherwise divided.