Nooramma: Biryani Durbar - A Moving Tale of Struggle and Survival

For marginalised communities like mine, what has given us a history is food.”   

Noor Jahan Begum, lovingly known as Noor, and affectionately called Nooramma, sets the scene as she prepares to cook her signature biryani. With the gentle melody of melancholic music in the background, her chiffon garments are seen hanging behind her. The aromatic spices fill the air, and then, Nooramma’s voice begins to weave a poignant tale, exploring the intricacies of her identity as a transwoman.

At the 18th edition of Mahindra Excellence in Theatre Awards,  Nooramma: Biryani Durbar promises to be a moving performance that will take audiences on a journey. Nooramma, gracefully moving around the stage, will take us back to her childhood and tell us about the time in her life when her family loved her for being a prince but what she truly felt like was a princess. A princess who would wear her mother’s sarees, adorn herself in flowers, and dance to songs that awakened a deep femininity within her.  

Nooramma shares her touching story as she gets ready. As she stands behind her translucent dupattas, she speaks of her trials and tribulations. As she settles down to do her makeup, she narrates a tale of love and loss. As she sits imposingly on a chair in the centre of the stage, she tells you about her biryani durbar. And as she stands behind her bed, gazing lovingly at old photographs, she paints a vivid picture of Thangama and the profound connection they shared. With every movement, every line, every expression – you will find yourself completely captivated by the sheer power of Nooramma’s performance.

Nooramma: Biryani Durbar is a powerful tale of struggle and survival. It is a story that focuses on the politics of food and the mistreatment of the trans community. It is a story of passion, and a story of heartbreak. And most importantly, it is a story of how love can help us rise together. Don’t miss out on this evocative performance, all set to be staged at the 18th META! 

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