Message of theatre spreads far and wide

Polish theatre director, Krzysztof Warlikowski, the author of the World Theatre Day 2015 message, has emphasized on theatre that seeks to bring out a world beyond what is visible and felt. “… We no longer have the strength to try and glimpse what lies beyond the gate, behind the wall

By Dalia Mukherjee
  • Published 3.04.15
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A scene from Lathi staged by Aghraney Nabanna at Ramrajatala on World Theatre Day and (below) B Garden Pratyasa staged Chakrabuha at Howrah Natyajon’s programme. Pictures by Gopal Senapati

Polish theatre director, Krzysztof Warlikowski, the author of the World Theatre Day 2015 message, has emphasized on theatre that seeks to bring out a world beyond what is visible and felt. “… We no longer have the strength to try and glimpse what lies beyond the gate, behind the wall. And that’s exactly why theatre should exist and where it should seek its strength. To peek inside where looking is forbidden.”

Observing World Theatre Day on March 27, several theatre groups of Howrah organised programmes, festivals at various parts of the town. Paschim Banga Natya Sangha always celebrates World Theatre Day with a gathering of its member groups at Bholagiri Kalamandir, but this year the one-day celebration was spread through two days. 

Working in association with Kathok Performing Repertoire, Paschim Banga Natya Sangha celebrated World Theatre Day on March 27 at Nana Mukh Prantar at Ramrajatala. Theatre director Seema Mukhopadhyay read out Warlikowski’s message sitting with theatre workers of Howrah. Four groups, Bauria People’s Repertory Theatre (PRT), Samipesu, Shilpi Sangha and Manchak staged their productions. Two other groups from Calcutta, Aghraney Nabanna and Nahali, had also arrived with their plays. 

Paschim Banga Natya Sangha’s celebration continued on March 29 at Bholagiri Kalamandir. From 3pm, the hall was half-filled with an enthusiastic audience. However, by 6pm, there was hardly any place to stand. After the lamp-lighting ceremony by playwright Amit Maitra, and an opening address by president Reba Bhattacharya, different programmes were arranged through the afternoon by theatre groups. 

It started with Samipesu’s srutinatak, Kabita Corporation Limited, a short play written by Subho Dasgupta. A short play by Mandas, Rabir Bandhu, was followed by another srutinatak called Shastyi by Shailpik. Other groups like Theatre Formation Paribartak, Monosij, Theatre Rhythm, Trisha, Bauria PRT and Manchak also staged their productions on this day. As a breather, Shilpi Sangha had organised a musical programme of Laloner gaan in between the plays.

Kathok Performing Repertoire had arranged a three-day theatre festival, ‘Three Days Theatre Days’, in view of World Theatre Day. The festival started from March 27 and continued till March 29. The first day’s programme was done in association with Paschim Banga Natya Sangha. On the second day, there was a school theatre festival. Students from four schools in Howrah and Kathok Performing Repertoire’s own children’s group staged short plays on this day. Inmates of Antadday Anath Ashrama from Paunshi in Midnapore, had also come to perform at the festival. “This is the second year of our school theatre festival and this year we have managed to include some more schools. We have been doing workshops at the schools and also at the orphanage at Paunshi,” said Kriti Majumdar, the director of Kathok Performing Repertoire. 

Howrah Natyajon celebrated World Theatre Day for the first time at Shibpur Yasodamoyee Vidyalaya, two days later, on March 29. In a brief programme, the headmaster, Santanu Ganguly, read out Krzysztof Warlikowski’s message. Playwright, Subrata Kanjilal, spoke on the significance of the day and the message. B Garden Pratyasha staged a one-act play, Chakrabuha.