The realm of art is not bound by the barriers of language and this transcendence of linguistic liminalities was at work during Rang Panicker , a six-day theatre festival held here to honour renowned Malayali playwright and theatre director Kavalam Narayana Panicker.
The festival, organised by Jaipur-based Bhargava Natyakulam, concluded on Thursday with the Sanskrit play Kalivesham .
The six-day festival (22nd June to 27th June) featured six plays by Mr. Panicker, besides a two-day seminar on his works attended by several eminent theatre personalities — including Ila Arun and Ashok Vajpeyi — from all over India.
“We found it utterly surprising that theatre lovers here were totally unaware of the works of this internationally renowned dramatist who is also the recipient of the Padma Bhushan,” Bharat Ratna Bhargava, theatre veteran and head of the Bhargava Natyakulam told The Hindu . “Therefore, we decided to honour Mr. Panicker here. Besides the plays, we had a two-day seminar focusing especially on his works where eminent theatre personalities talked about Indian theatre and the ‘theatre of roots.”
The six plays (in Sanskrit, Hindi and Malayalam) staged included Madhyamavyayogam , Karnabharam , Malavikagnimithram , Uttara Rama Charitam , Theyya Theyyam and Kalivesham .
K.N. Panicker was born in 1928 in Kavalam village in Alappuzha under the erstwhile kingdom of Travancore. He has written over 26 plays in Malayalam, many of them adapted from classical works in Sanskrit and from Shakespeare. He has directed two Malayalam movies as well.
He received the prestigious Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowship in 2002 and the Padma Bhushan, one of the highest civilian honours of the country, in 2007.