A. D. RANGARAJAN
‘Srirama Sugreeva Mythri’ focussed on the deep friendship between Rama and Sugreeva.
The mythological play Srirama Sugreeva Mythri performed at Mahati auditorium last week highlighted the importance of friendship and the avowed stand taken by Lord Rama and the primate-king Sugreeva to keep it intact.
The event was performed by Sri Pruthulagiri Lakshmi Nrusimha Natya Mandali, Vedayapalem (Nellore) as the 65th in the series of monthly mythological plays conducted by Sri Venkateswara Natyakala Parishat, in association with the TTD’s Hindu Dharma Prachara Parishat.
The play began with the circumstances leading to the friendship and culminated in the establishment of a strong bond between the two kings-in-exile. The first scene showed Rama, with wife Sita and brother Lakshmana in tow, proceeding to Panchavati Theeram, after he was banished from Ayodhya. On the other hand, Sugreeva lost his wife and kingdom to his brother Vaali and stayed at Rushyamuka hills.
When Surpanakha fell for Rama and expressed her love, Lakshmana cut off her nose and ears to teach her a lesson. Surpanakha ran to her brother Ravana and explained the harassment meted out to her. The latter sent his envoy Maricha in the guise of a golden deer. Amused at the sight of the deer dazzling in golden hue, Sita asked Rama to get it for her. Maricha, who was then killed by Rama, shouted out “Ha Lakshmana ! Ha Sita!” in Rama’s voice, diverting their attention. In the melee, Ravana abducted Sita.
Rama started his trek down South along with Lakshmana in search of Sita when he met his devotee Hanuman and through him, found Sugreeva. Sugreeva sought Rama’s hand of friendship in getting his wife back from the fold of Vaali, while Rama too sought the former’s help in tracing out wife. With mutual goals in hand, the two vowed in the name of the ‘Panchabhuthas’ to remain friends and work for each other’s welfare, bringing the curtains down.
The play dwelled more on the circumstances leading to their meeting, but less on the action taken by them for the benefit of the other. The playwright and director C. Lakshmikanta Sarma donned the role of Rama, while Narasaiah played the equally weighty role of Sugreeva.