DECEMBER 2023 - APRIL 2024
Co-directing and choreographing High School Musical: On Stage for Uncommon Collegiate Charter High School.
Completing new drafts of the pilot for Out of the Woods, a new limited series that reimagines fairytale characters in a contemporary land without magic.
Teaser blurb: Hansel and Gretel, Little Red and the Wolf, and Cinderella are just humans living like the rest of us in our world. Here, there are no woods, no magic, no fairy godmother. But family trauma, mental illness, a big bad wolf? You don’t need a storybook for those. Will they find their happy endings in this life?
Writing the screenplay for a new feature, Second Draft.
UPCOMING IN 2024
Publication in Shakespeare Adaptations in Indian Cinema, an edited volume by Nishi Pulugurtha: "The Hungry Women: Performing Gendered and Familial Desire in Titus Andronicus" (solicited by Bloomsbury).
Music video for a new song by Tizita (lead performer).
SEASONS OF LOVE
Katy Lai Roy, Director
as quoted in The Telegraph
It's a fascinating journey working closely with Ahon Gooptu, the most open-minded and generous of playwrights, to construct and craft his script into a performance layer by layer.
TARAMANDAL! EK NAYA SAFAR
The Scarlet & Black
Gooptu turns in a captivating performance as Anish realizes that the distance to the Chalawan System is far longer than he expected and turns back to Earth. Confronted with terror at his loneliness, Anish cries in one of the most memorable scenes of the play. [...]
The scene takes on layered significance for those who have lived through the COVID-19 pandemic, migrants who feel alienated from themselves and the places they occupy, or anyone who has ever had to navigate the painful process of becoming comfortable with solitude.
SEASONS OF LOVE
The Red Curtain’s Seasons of Love, “a play in development” by Ahon Gooptu, emerged from the author’s sense of loss at his grandmother’s death. Among other things, she instilled in him a love of Shakespeare; an early scene conveys this touchingly, when she invokes Durga’s advent with Romeo’s lines seeing Juliet on the balcony. Equally strong, she deplores the degeneration in popular Puja festivities.
Ahon Gooptu is an NYC-based actor, playwright/screenwriter, producer, collaborator, and scholar from Kolkata, India. In the last six years, he has found semblances of home in Iowa, Illinois, Washington, Connecticut, and Florida. He is drawn to interdisciplinary collaborations for telling queer, brown, and/or migrant narratives.
Ahon is Associate with Pickle Factory Dance Foundation, former Global Artistic Associate with Make/Shift Theatre Company, former Repertory Member with Ranan, Finalist for Definition Theatre's Amplify Series Two (2022), Semifinalist for Playwrights Foundation's 46th Bay Area Playwrights Festival (2023), and inaugural recipient of the Sandy Moffett Award for Practice in Theatre and Dance (2021). Ahon has previously worked with the Steppenwolf, Taproot Theatre, The Red Curtain International, Lime Arts Productions, Farmers Alley Theatre, and the Kennedy Center.
He has published a short collection of plays, All That Glistens (Grinnell College Press, 2021) and co-authored a chapter included in Shakespeare and Digital Pedagogy: Case Studies and Strategies (Bloomsbury, The Arden Shakespeare, 2022). He has a chapter upcoming in Shakespeare Adaptations on the Indian Screen (Bloomsbury, 2023).
Ahon holds an MA in Theatre from Florida State University, a BA in Theatre and English from Grinnell College, and has trained at the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center's National Theater Institute.
Photo by Justin Hayworth
My work as a SCHOLAR focuses on the intersections of race, ethnicity, queer studies, and transnationalism, with a special emphasis on migrants of colour narratives in the U.S.
As an EDUCATOR, I see theatre as a space to observe what I see and question what I know, investigate what I think could be and re-conceive what I think should be.
As a THEATREMAKER creating and collaborating on new work, I find ways to consolidate the void that exists between my Indian traditions and contradicting U.S. American cultures.
Theatre, to me, is a space for my truth and perspective to find an expression in the hopes that it will speak to and move at least one person in the audience.
Photo by Justin Hayworth