The Telegraph
Wednesday , October 31 , 2012
Since 1st March, 1999
CIMA Gallary

Tales of sex workers explored

- Assam’s Rabijita Gogoi’s play in Prithvi Theatre festival

Guwahati, Oct. 30: Assam’s Rabijita Gogoi is all set to tell the world about the life of sex workers.

Rabijita’s play Ok Tata Bye Bye, which will be staged at Prithvi Theatre Festival on Monday, is about a couple’s venture to document the life of sex workers and their experiences during the process.

Ok Tata Bye Bye is a play written during Writer’s Bloc 2011, where 12 new plays were penned under the guidance of theatre scriptwriters from the UK in a workshop and produced by Rage theatre, Mumbai.

Written by Purba Naresh and directed by Rabijita, the bilingual (Hindi and English) play will cast Alham Khan Karachiwala, Prerna Chawla, Nishi Joshi, Gagan Riar, Sunita Rajwar, Jim Sarbh, Gopal Dutt and Sarika Singh.

The play depicts a couple, Pooja and Mitch, who are inspired by a community of people living near a highway in north India. This particular community has over the years come to believe that prostitution is part of its tradition. The women from this community serve truckers who traverse the route regularly, and who stop at the highway for three things — food, petrol and sex. And the story goes on.

“When we staged the play at Prithvi Theatre as part of the Writer’s Bloc Festival ’11, we received a very good response. We are happy to be now a participant at the Prithvi Theatre Festival. We are working hard so that the play earns accolades,” said Rabijita.

Prithvi Theatre Festival, celebrating theatre, was first held on the fifth foundation day of Prithvi Theatre in 1983.

Prithvi Theatre is a subsidiary of the Shri Prithviraj Kapoor Memorial Trust & Research Foundation set up in the memory of Prithviraj Kapoor. It was formed with the aim to primarily promote professional Hindi theatre with all technical facilities available, aiding and grooming aspiring and deserving stage artistes, technicians and researchers, conducting workshops, creating a theatre resource centre and research library and providing medical and educational assistance to theatre workers and their children.

The focus of the festival varies from year to year. In the past, the festival focused on local, national and international theatre.

This time, the festival has returned after a hiatus of two years with 41 shows of 29 productions with all plays from Mumbai and Pune with the exception of Farhad Sorabjee’s Hard Places, a UK production.

Ratna Pathak Shah’s A Walk In The Woods starring Naseeruddin Shah and Rajit Kapoor, Ramesh Talwar’s Kaifi aur Main with Shabana Azmi and Javed Akhtar, Nandita Das’s Between the Lines, Nadira Jaheer Babbar’s Begum Jaan, Sunil Shanbag’s Maro Piyu Gayo Rangoon, Om Katare’s Ravanleela, M.S. Sathu’s Moteram besides Ok Tata Bye Bye are a few of the 29 productions.