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When actions are louder than words

When actions are louder than words
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The ongoing Bharat Rang Mahotsav is spreading it colours with mesmerising plays staged everyday. On Wednesday, a non-verbal play titled Life-In-Progress was staged, the play had no defined linear narrative but a series of images that look at our lives, our surrounding world and our inner spaces.

Old newspapers and trash, a rag-picker, creepy crawlies, creatures from nightmares, dreamscapes, nebulous faces, dismembered hands, plastic bottles, curious people, devouring mouths, grabbing hands, running, masking, unmasking and more trash make haunting images that hold your imagination for a few moments and then disappear into the trash. The 50-minute play was staged by Delhi based group Katkatha Puppet Arts Trust.

The play titled, Sindu Kirilli had two interwoven stories. In the first, a young girl decides to leave her elderly grandfather behind on their farm in the valley so that she can escape to the city and pursue her dreams of becoming a famous singer. In the second story, an ageing playwright prepares to leave behind the ‘artificial’ world of theatre and urban life and move back to his origins in the farmland. His days of planning and dreaming about the ‘glorious future’ are nearing an end just as the young girl's are beginning.

The significance of the plot lies in the themes it presents before the audience and the secrets it reveals about the characters.
Sindu Kirilli
is essentially a tale of hope being passed down from one generation to the next. A group from Sri Lanka, Red Wings Theatre Group presented it in Sinhala language.

Another non-verbal play Maya II was presented by Sharma Arts and Craft House (SACH), Manipur. The theme was Maya, the veil of deception, which blinds the eyes of mortals, and makes them behold a world which they cannot say either that it is or that it is not –  for it is like a dream, it is like the sunshine on the sand which the traveller takes from afar for water.

The process of perpetuating the population through sexual union between the male and the female is natural. But aspiring for something that is far away is like the desire of the moth for the star; this is also human nature and a cause behind the teeming populace. These are just some of the ideas that
Maya II
attempts to explore. The play Nihsanga Samrat (The Lonely Monarch) is based on a novel by Sunil Gangopadhyay.

Presented in Bengali by group Paikpara Indraranga from Kolkata the play is a saga of the life and times of Bengali Theatre thespian, Shishir Kumar Bhaduri who has almost become a legend for the current generation. The play presents a collage of various aspects of his life, on and off the stage, with many of his plays being revisited in the context of his personal life. It is an effort to look at the legend as a human being, unveiling all mythical anecdotes – a man who could disregard an award like the Padma Bhushan with ease, who lived with the aim of fulfilling his lifelong dream to create the Institution of National Theatre, who could rebuff the conventional route to success in his quest for a unique format of Indian theatre which would be independent of the British dramatic parameters that were then prevalent – a man who faced every challenge and accolade in life with equal stoicism.

Japanese non-verbal play titled, Utsushi was created at the special request of international festivals willing to present Sankai Juku. Composed of excerpts from the repertory pieces, it has been newly reworked and re-staged in order to become a piece that contains the quintessence of the art of the choreographer Ushio Amagatsu.

When: Till 15 January
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