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Telling a Chinese tale

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Young talents: Actors of the Sunday Children’s Theatre getting ready to stage a play.
Young talents: Actors of the Sunday Children’s Theatre getting ready to stage a play.

At Surasu Drama Festival

A team of 25-odd children are busy preparing to showcase their histrionic and oratorical skills, rehearsing for a Malayalam play based on a popular Chinese folk tale ‘Empty Pot.’

‘Kaali Chatti’ is being staged by the Sunday Children’s Theatre as part of the ongoing Surasu Drama Festival in Kozhikode.

“Through singing and dancing and story narration, the participants will have the opportunity to hone their acting talents. Here is an initiative that provides ample scope for children to give vent to their imagination and theatrical skills,” points out Manu Jose, the director of the play and noted story-teller.

Manu says the Chinese folk tale that is to be enacted by the children has a universal theme. It deals with the futility of overt competitiveness that can be disastrous in the end.

The Chinese ambience will prevail in the stage settings and the play will take off with a dragon dance, singing and dialogue in ‘jiberish’ (nonsensical language) and continue into the Malayalam narration of the story with the protagonist Ping’s mother calling out to him.

The story goes like this: eight-year-old Ping has green fingers. All that he plants thrives and blooms. His neighbours and friends take his help in growing their plants and crops.

The king of the Chinese kingdom is a lover of flowers and the owner of an enviable garden. As he has no descendants, the king is on the look out for a successor and wants to select one from among the children in his kingdom.

It is this part of the story that comes as the denouement; portraying the enthusiasm of the children, and parents all the more, to be selected as the successor of the king.

‘Kaali Chatti,’ a 45-minute enactment, would be staged at Kozhikode Town Hall at 6.30 p.m. on Monday, the organisers said.

Maleeha Raghaviah

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