"Many people who come to yoga are searching for something," said Burkman, a Columbus native who lives in San Francisco. "They embody the angst that is part of what we all go through as human beings. My character is in search of a sense of peace -- both within herself and within the world in a time of war."
Her semi-autobiographical character, a yoga teacher coping with a romantic relationship, struggles for peace at a yoga retreat with seven other characters.
"The name of the play speaks to the theme," she said. "It's a metaphor for warring for peace. This is a paradox throughout yoga.
"Yoga encapsulates the yin and yang of life. There's push and pull, day and night, hot and cold, masculine and feminine, birth and death in everything."
Burkman collaborated on the piece with her mother, playwright Katherine Burkman, as well as co-writers Susie Gerald, Ann Hall and Richard Esquinas.
"Coming home to do this play with my mom has been a creative outlet, but also a much more personal way to be creative with her," said Deborah Burkman, 33.
Her last theatrical collaboration with her mother was Homescape, the first site-specific performance piece (1994) by Women at Play.
Although the troupe called it quits last year, the members reconvened for Yoga Warriors.
"Learning more about what my daughter does with yoga has opened up more of the spiritual side of it for me," said Katherine Burkman, who has practiced yoga for six years.
Esquinas, the play's primary producer, has taught yoga for 32 years and operates Japa Yoga Home Studio, a yoga center at 422 Parkview Dr. in the Clintonville neighborhood.
Intrigued by a script about yoga, he was drawn into producing his first play.
"I thought it could explode into something nice," he said.
"The play explores the practical embarrassments that people sometimes have when they get on the mat and the feelings of sadness or joy that arise from practicing various yoga postures.
"What really excites me is the way the play brings to life, from the yoga students' perspective, an innocence about the art and discipline of yoga."