The Ramlila at Ramnagar, Varanasi is a unique theatrical and religious event, an annual, month-long enactment of the Ramayana story. The performance covers a whole town and involves an entire community. Men, women and children follow the course of the processional performance, accompanying Rama from his exile to his triumphant return to Ayodhya to partake of the joy and glory of Ramarajya.
In Actors, Pilgrims, Kings and Gods readers are plunged into the rich and lively experience of the Ramlila with its svarupas, effigies, masks, Ramayanis, Vyasas, gods, goddesses, demons and monkeys; with its theatrical gimmickry and spectacle and marvels; with its thronging, surging crowds. Performers and spectators are part of a seamless ceremony. Actors, Pilgrims, Kings and Gods documents this unique theatrical tradition.