Bengali play, ‘Deshe Bidweshe’, to be staged on January 20

Ekalavya Performing Arts and Picture Wicture Productions will present a two-part play based on war and its effects

January 18, 2024 12:27 pm | Updated 12:27 pm IST

Stills from the play

Stills from the play | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

Ekalavya Performing Arts (EPA) and Picture Wicture Productions collaborate to stage Deshe Bidweshe. Directed by Bodhisatta Sarkar, Tanumay Datta and Biplab Kundu, Deshe Bidweshe is based onthe two Bengali plays, Swadhinotar Swapno (Dream of Freedom) and Juddhobaaj (Warmonger), according to Bodhisatta

Speaking amidst rehearsals from Whitefield, Bodhisatta says, “The first play is a modern take on the life and times of Khudiram Basu, one of the earliest martyrs in the struggle for independence. With a new age sense and sensibility, we embark upon a journey to understand India. But where is this, India? What is the concept of a nation? The answer to these are sought through the struggles of young Khudiram.”

Juddhobaaj, Bodhisatta says, is a socio-political play. “It showcases the perils of war, which is often glorified under the garb of hyper nationalism.”

Juddhobaaj, the 45-year-old theatre and mime practitioner says, is about different aspects of war and how it impacts people of various strata of the society. “The play looks at sociological hierarchy from the perspective of war. It is a combination of street and proscenium theatre. There will be loud actions (more like a pictorial representation on stage), with words, making it easy for even a non-Bengali person to comprehend what is happening on stage.”

The three directors, Bodhisatta says, brought in three perspectives. “We started with workshops. The script, the voice and perspective evolved with the participants during the workshop. Though we are listed as directors, we worked more as play designers.” This, Bodhisatta says, is a contemporary method, where the actor is an integral part of the evolution of the script.

“Rather than being told what to do, everyone wants to have a voice, and share their perspective. We work with children and young adults at EPA and discovered that they have strong and valid perspectives, which we found of extreme value and decided to feed our creativity on those aspects as well.”

EPA and Picture Wicture Productions, says Bodhisatta also works on mimes, pantomimes, audio plays, and short films. Deshe Bidweshe, Bodhisatta says, will also have a little bit of mime, which he created. Bodhisatta learnt mime from his father, who in turn learnt from artiste Yogesh Dutta. “I teach mime at EPA, which has been practising mime since 2016.”

Deshe Bidweshe will be staged on January 20, at 3.30pm and 7.30pm at Jagriti Theatre, Whitefield. Tickets on BookMyShow

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