Theatre

Identity crisis

Trampolines are used in ‘Avataar’

Trampolines are used in ‘Avataar’  

Nireeksha Women’s Theatre stages its new production, Avataar, tomorrow

Siji M. Kottoor. She knows that’s her name from her images on social networking sites. Other than that she is clueless about her past. So she goes searching on cyber space to find out who she is.

Avataar, a Malayalam play of Nireeksha Women’s Theatre, which premieres in the city on September 30, talks about this quest for identity.

As the tagline of the play goes, it is about loss of past, identities, sensibilities..., says E. Rajarajeswari, author and playwright of the drama. “The protagonist has lost her past and her desperate search on the social networking sites puts her in touch with many false leads. Many people recognise her, but what one says is different from the other. It is then that she comes across Navin who identifies himself as her lover. He works in the oil rig. He tells her how his life alternates between the desert and the sea. She develops an empathy for him, but can’t reciprocate his love,” says Rajarajeswari, who co-founded Nireeksha with Sudhi Devayani in 1999.

Sudhi Devayani (left) and E. Rajarajeswari

Sudhi Devayani (left) and E. Rajarajeswari   | Photo Credit: Picasa

Sudhi, who has directed the play, says that a highlight of the production is the innovative stage design. While the characters who interact with the protagonist on various social networking sites perform on trampolines, the character ‘troll’ appears on roller skates. “Since the whole action happens on the virtual space we wanted a different kind of movement on the stage. That’s when we zeroed in on a trampoline. We use the trampolines at crucial moments in the play. It might be a first-of-its-kind attempt on stage,” says Sudhi.

Stage design of ‘Avataar’

Stage design of ‘Avataar’  

She adds that the artistes had to practice a lot to get the right balance. “Some of them jump really high, when they have to depict excitement,” Sudhi says.

About using roller skates she says it goes with the nature of Internet trolls, which have become integral to social media. “They pop up at unexpected situations and some of them are too silly. The same happens here also when Siji is trying hard to find out who she is,” says Sudhi.

There will be a riot of colours on stage, with multimedia projectors and big screens integrated into the design. “Technology has been put to maximum use in the work,” says Sudhi.

As the play goes to more stages, more aspects will be integrated.

“More subjects will be taken up and the artistes will also be experimenting with the props on the stage,” Rajarajeswari adds.

Actors in the play are Aswathy Chand as Siji, Sarat Kumar as Navin and Prasoon V. J. as troll. Biresh Krishnan, Molamma K. and Neena Gireesh play other characters.

The play will be staged on September 30, 7 p.m., at Vyloppilly Samskriti Bhavan.

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Printable version | Jun 4, 2020 10:27:55 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/theatre/Identity-crisis/article14845514.ece

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