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A monologue & play based on Tagore's work - Seema Biswas to act in both during next month's theatre festival held to help artistes in need

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By Staff Reporter
  • Published 30.01.12

Jan. 29: Actor Seema Biswas will be the cynosure of all eyes when she performs in two plays based on two short stories by Rabindranath Tagore — Strir Patra and Jivit ya Mrit — at Rabindra Bhawan on February 13.

The plays are part of the five-day Artistes Welfare Fund: Assam Theatre Festival.

Strir Patra will be a 40-minute monologue by Seema.

Saba Kota Manuh, Bheblai Bhalo and Apeksha will be some of the other plays to be staged during the festival.

The Assam Theatre Festival, however, is a festival with a cause.

“We have organised this festival, which is for a noble cause, for the first time. Our main aim is to add to the corpus fund of Rs 11 lakh for the relief of the artistes, as well to cover more artistes under it. The festival will be part of our fund-raising programme,” Mrinal Kanta Das, secretary of Artistes Welfare Fund, said.

Das said artistes and technicians have failed to receive financial support from the government. If they were provided financial help, it could bring a lot of relief and difference in their lives, he added.

“The xilpi pension, which is provided by the government to a select few, is also very nominal. However, if we can enhance the corpus fund, many more will stand to gain,” Das said.

The Seagull Theatre Group will stage Apeksha for the first time in the city.

“The play, performed in Delhi, Mysore and Mumbai, is based on the novel Datal Hatir Uye Khowa Haoda by Mamoni Raisom Goswami.

The journey of two Brahmin widows — Durga and Xoru Gokhani — and their plight in the midst of the xatras, post-Independence, is the theme of our play Apeksha.

“I feel everyone should extend their helping hand to this organisation, which is working for a good cause,” the group’s director, Baharul Islam, said.

A cultural organisation, Ba, has come up with its latest production.

Actor Pakija Begum has directed Saba Kota Manuh written by Yese Dorje Thongshi.

Begum, the secretary of the organisation, said, “The premiere of the play Saba Kota Manuh will be held at Srimanta Sankaradeva Kalakshetra on February 5 and then performed at the theatre festival.”

“The initiative by the organisation is for those people associated with art and culture. I hope other artistes take similar initiatives to support the organisation for the benefit of the artiste fraternity,” she added.

The Calcutta-based theatre group, Passion, will perform the play Bheblai Bhalo.

Besides, Jivit ya Mrit, directed by Anuradha Kapoor, will be presented by Vivadi of New Delhi, also with Seema Biswas in the lead.

The formation of the Artistes Welfare Fund, way back in 1993, by Natyaprabhakar Satya Prasad Baruah and Natyasamrat Girish Choudhury was to help the artistes of Assam in distress.

The trust, which started with Rs 11 lakh as its corpus fund, has already rendered help to 147 artistes and technicians from various disciplines across the state.