An initiative that gives financially strapped new productions a chance to get on stage.

A theatre company offers its own space to leading drama groups across the country for rehearsals and final performances. It also offers seed money so they can stage a play of their choice. There’s just one condition the performing troupes have to meet: their productions have to premiere in Bangalore. Jagriti Theatre’s objective with this is to showcase new productions and provide an impetus to English language theatre by top theatre groups in India.

The Curtain Raisers initiative by Jagriti Theatre will play host to eight new productions by Black Coffee, Just Theatre, Workshop Productions, Flinntheater and Tortilla from Bangalore; Theatre Nisha from Chennai; Akvarious, AllMyTea and Q Theatre Productions from Mumbai.

Arundhati Raja, artistic director at Jagriti Theatre, knows the difficulties of taking theatre mainstream. She figured that not many theatre companies could afford to perform at high profile venues mainly because of financial constraints. Yet, good theatre by the best talent across India deserves centre stage. Curtain Raisers was designed to achieve just that and pull in the best theatre groups to perform over February and March at Jagriti. “The idea came up that we could help a theatre company to get a play on at Jagriti by helping out with an advance amount as seed money, and charge no rental but take a percentage of the ticket sales,” says Arundhati on the premise.

This string of performances at Jagriti kicks off with the Black Coffee production of Yasmina Reza’s God of Carnage. With the spotlight on Bangalore, one of the fastest growing art and culture hubs in southern India, the cause of intellectually stimulating theatre that is also a treat for the senses gets a significant boost. In addition, local audiences have an extended period over which they can take in drama at its best and return for more.

Curtain Raisers

Where: Jagriti Theatre, Bangalore.

When: Until March 31

More details: 080-41242879 or http://jagrititheatre.com/