Tara Theatre presents


“It was a great tragedy.  We were friends one day and enemies the next.  I will take these things to my grave.”

The 1947 partition of India saw millions uprooted and resulted in unspeakable violence. The partition resulted in the formation of three countries: India, West Pakistan and East Pakistan – now Pakistan and Bangladesh. It would also shape modern Britain. Witnesses to this brutal moment in history live among us, yet the stories of that time remain shrouded in silence.

SILENCE is a new play focused on communal storytelling – presenting a shared history inspired by the remarkable personal testimonies of people who lived through the last days of the British Raj. Commissioned to mark the 75th anniversary of partition, SILENCE is adapted from Kavita Puri’s acclaimed book Partition Voices: Untold British Stories and was originally co-produced with the Donmar Warehouse.

The production examined the legacy of this brutal moment in history. Abdul Shayek, former Artistic Director of Tara Theatre, directed the original production and had developed this version for touring at the time of his death in August 2023. Iqbal Khan, Artistic Director of the 2022 Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremony, and a friend and colleague of Abdul’s, will step in to direct the touring version.

SILENCE is adapted from the testimonies and stories of people who lived through Partition. It is based on Kavita Puri’s acclaimed book Partition Voices: Untold British Stories and written by Sonali Bhattacharyya, Gurpreet Kaur Bhatti, Ishy Din and Alexandra Wood.

Click here to watch the interview with Kavita Puri and Iqkbal Khan

Original production directed and developed for tour by Abdul Shayek
Directed by Iqbal Khan

From an original co-production by Tara Theatre and Donmar Warehouse
In association with Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch

Lead image: Silence at Donmar Warehouse, 2022

Audience reactions: SILENCE

Download programme for Silence here

Production images by Harry Elletson

Reviews of Silence, 2022

‘Powerful docu-theatre show giving voice to those caught up in the chaos of the Partition of India’

Time Out

‘A moving experience’

The Arts Desk

‘Essential viewing’

Evening Standard

Running time: 2 hours (including 20 minute interval)

Suitable for ages 14+


Tickets from £10

Groups of 10 – 39 get 10% off each full price ticket
Groups of 40+ get 15% off each full price ticket

Tickets for school groups are £11 each. A teacher gets a free place with every 10 student tickets. This offer is available on weekdays only and must be booked in advance.

Please email groups@homemcr.org or call Box Office on 0161 200 1500 (12:00-20:00 daily).