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Renowned director and theater legend Peter Stephen Paul Brooke breathed his last in London at the age of 97. For Brooke, ‘the world is a theatre’ was not just a ruse, but he turned any place like a school, hospital, factory, mine or gym into a theatre.
In 1985, when the war in Vietnam was going on, Brooke presented the Mahabharata on stage in Paris. The spectators kept watching the play for about nine hours. Eventually Brooke asked if a war could end the conflict. Do leaders and people really have a choice between peace and war? So the whole world was shocked. Every day we hear about the pain and horror of foolish wars around the world, Brooke used to say. The Mahabharata is about crores of corpses and most importantly, Yudhishthira says at the end that ‘this victory is a defeat’. This is the real truth of war. In 2021, the Government of India honored him with the Padma Shri.
Creating magic on every stage…
Brooke wrote in The Empty Space, just give me any empty space, I’ll make it a stage. With light, color and innovative methods, he turned even the inappropriate places into the best of the stage. In 1970 he directed Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream for a Stratford production. In its scenes, he used only white color.
Don’t succumb to professionalism
Brooke did not become popular with the general public due to her insistence on not succumbing to professionalism. Brooke continued to work till his last days. In the book Tip of the Tongue, published in 2017, Brooke writes, “Every genre of theater is like going to the doctor.
associated with films in adolescence
Born on March 21, 1925 in London, Brooke’s father was a company director and mother a scientist. Leaving school at the age of 16, he joined the film studio. Graduated from Oxford in English and Foreign Languages.