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The Clay Connection in association with Supple Productions



Three women and a potter's wheel


If clay could talk, what would it say? Stories of women from ancient myth and modern life are brought vividly to life through thrilling classical Indian dance, original music and.... half a ton of clay. 


Vidya Thirunarayan combines her expertise in Bharata Natyam dance with her skill as a potter in a unique theatrical event, directed by Tim Supple.


Internationally renowned as a Bharata Natyam dancer, Vidya Thirunarayan is also a prominent ceramicist, and in 2015 began combining these skills in performance. Through dancing with clay and throwing pots on stage she found a new way to tell stories rich with drama and emotion.  


Prajapati, Sanskrit for potter, represents both the supreme creator and the lowest of the low; a duality that has inspired this intriguing new work.  


 Lives of Clay is a vivid and vital theatre experience, full of heart and made of mud. 





Creative team:


Conceived and Performed by Vidya Thirunarayan

Director: Tim Supple

Director of Choreography: Debbie Fionn Barr

Text: Vayu Naidu

Composer: Barry Ganberg

Sound Design: Alan Burgess

Designer: Julie Belinda Landau

Production Manager: James Ball

Tour and Company Stage Manager: Anna Weatherston

Film and photography: Zoe Manders

Producer: Lisa Wolfe

Tour dates 2023

Thrive Festival, Dartington 30 April

Redcar Festival 26 & 27 August

Freedom Festival, Hull 2 & 3 September

Inside Out Festival, Dorset 16 & 17 September

Tour of India 2023


TATA litfest , NCPA ,Mumbai  28 & 29th Oct 

Serendipity Festival, Goa 15, 16, 17, 18th Dec

Spaces, Chennai  6th & 7th Jan 2024 ( at Sun rise and Sun set)

Related Academic presentations

 Approaches to Indian dance-pottery performance

23 May, University of Chichester

Making connections : body, dance, and clay in Indian dance - pottery Performance

New Mobilities 'on the Turn?'- Conference hosted by Society of Dance Research and The Place, 8 Sept, London



National Tour 2022


Brighton festival – 14 &15 May

Norwich & Norfolk festival - 21 & 22 May

Salisbury International Arts festival – 29 May

Timber festival,Burton upon Trent – 1 July

Hat Fair, Winchester – 3 July

Southampton Mela - 16 July

Ensemble festival, London – 23 July

Kensington and Chelsea festival, London - 24 July

Stockton International Riverside festival, Stockton-on-Tees – 5 & 6 Aug

Shaw House, Newbury- 18 September


Lives of Clay information pack 


For more information on the production  please contact
Lisa Wolfe  at



Funding, commissioning, and partner credits:

Lives of Clay (2022) is supported by Without Walls, commissioned by Brighton Festival, Certain Blacks and 101 Outdoor Arts, with additional support from Arts Asia and funding from Arts Council England. Produced in association with Supple productions at 101 Outdoor Arts Creation Space. With thanks to University of Chichester, Rudolf Steiner House and Farnham Maltings.


Special thanks to Chris Fogg, Geetha Sridhar, Lee Hart, Marie- Gabriella Rotie and  Keith Waite for their creative contributions to the Research workshops leading to this production.







Images captured on tour

A short film from the R&D

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