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Plays galore regale city

Bhubaneswar, Feb. 19: Back-to-back theatre festivals are regaling the art lovers of the city. Plays on varied themes were staged here as part of the 34th foundation day celebrations of the theatre group, Manana Natya Sanstha.

The troupe had organised a five-day drama festival at Rabindra Mandap that concluded on February 16. A theatre extravaganza, organised by the Natya Chetana in Khurda, concluded today while another organisation Satabdira Kalakar is carrying forward the theatre juggernaut with its weeklong national-level theatre festival commencing today.

The inaugural day of the festival by the Manana Natya Sanstha saw the troupe enthralling the audience with their comedy Tinga Budhha. Directed by Manoj Patnaik, who also played the protagonist, the play left the audience in splits. It is a story of a short-tempered old man, who is accused of getting enraged on petty issues. But, the man keeps explaining that his anger is justified.

Although well supported by his cast, Manoj was the star of the show. His portrayal of the old man was striking. “The play sends across the message that with sweetness in demeanour, which costs absolutely nothing, one can win over enemies,” said Manoj.

The second day of the festival saw a social drama. Puri-based troupe Rangshala presented the play titled Ajati. Written by movie star Bijay Mohanty, the play speaks about the wide gap between two castes.

Lal Pain staged by the Jharsuguda-based troupe, Mirror Theatre, narrated the story of construction of the Hirakud Dam and how lives of those protesting it were jeopardised.

Subhash Chandra Pradhan wrote and directed the play. Bhubaneswar-based theatre troupe Bijay-Ek Uchwaas staged Tari Lagi, written by acclaimed playwright Bijay Mishra and the Pratidhwani troupe from Rourkela presented Tulasi Gacha, respectively on the last two days.

The entire festival registered a huge footfall. Today, 16th people’s theatre festival by the Natya Chetana that was organised in Khurda concluded. The five-day festival witnessed participation from troupes of Odisha and Bengal. A team from South Korea, too, entertained the audience.

Now, theatre lovers are all set to enjoy plays at the 15th Kalinga Natya Mahotsav by the Shatabdira Kalakar. The festival will see theatre groups from Bhubaneswar, Bhopal, Rourkela, Calcutta, Raigarh and Kashmir enthralling the art aficionados at Rabindra Mandap from today evening.