There is no end to experimenting with Tagore ever since VisvaBharati’s copyright on the bard’s works ended, and especially so on his 150th birth anniversary. Here is another, a multimedia production of Tagore’s very complex play, Raja, in English. Incidentally, this is also the centenary year of Raja.
Directed by theatre-television director Debasish Raychaudhuri, the script for the multimedia production is based on English translations of Raja and Arup Ratan, both done by Basant Rungta.
On why he chose to do Raja in multimedia, Raychoudhury said: “Raja is a very important and seminal play of Rabindranath and its political theme on good governance is still very relevant. On the philosophical side too, Raja is not just about the search for God, but for life itself.”
On choosing to do a multimedia production, the director said: “I thought it would be nice to show Surangama’s past life on video.”
The production will have the British poet and translator William Radice in the title role. “I have been waiting to work on Raja. It is one of Tagore’s most profound and fascinating works and has some dark and mysterious aspects. When this offer came along, I said why not. I shall want to write something about Raja once I take part in it,” said Radice.
The production will have Barun Chanda playing the sutradhar. The play will be staged at Gyan Manch on February16.
Mind your language
Location: A near-empty AC Metro coach.
Shouts of gali ka kutta (street dog) reverberate through the coach. Shocked commuters turn towards the source of the gleeful voice, a child. His mother sits smiling benignly. There is no shock on her face. As if on second thoughts, she reprimands the child but with a smile on her lips!
(Contributed by Anasuya Basu and Saionee Chakraborty)