LIFE

Message in a folk tale

Giving lessons in survival

Giving lessons in survival  

CHILDREN, LOOK who is coming on the stage on Thursday at Ravindra Kalakshetra....

The Cat, the Big Cat, Mouse, Parrot, Dog, will present the drama, "Gadagadale Gangadharashastry.'' If you think you have heard that title earlier, you are right. We wrote a fortnight ago about the painting competition, based on the theme of this play.

Now, here are 32 children from Blossom School, Kanakapura, putting life into the characters of the play. The show will start at 5.30 p.m. Muddappa Smaraka Trust is doing it for the second consecutive year.

Come to think of the title. "Gadagadale" is the mouth of a pot. The cat in the play inserts its head into a pot and cannot bring it out. It gets the pot broken but the mouth of the pot remains around it. And the fabulous name, Gangadharashastry, in this play is that of a cat, which claims to be on the path of attaining sainthood.

The story is about how the clever cat teaches different lessons to the tiger. The last lesson is on how to climb on top of a tree. The cat, being what it is, decides not to let the tiger know how to climb down. Reason? It does not want to risk its life. The tiger may have the cat for breakfast. As the children rehearsed on Wednesday, there was excitement in the air, waiting for D-day.

During the enactment, they will bridge some of the rural- urban divide as well, by bringing a folk tale to an urban audience. The story has its own tale. It was narrated first to M. Byregowda, folklore expert, by Marakka of Uruganadoddi village in Kanakapura taluk.

It all happened when Dr. Byregowda was on mission to study the Iruligas, a tribe living in certain pockets of Bangalore rural district.

An impressed Byregowda chose to use it for the annual open painting competition conducted by the Trust last month.

The children were excited too. You had to see the paintings to believe it.

The play is being jointly organised by the Trust, Sri Jagadguru Siddalingeswara Education Trust of Kanakapura, and Ranga Samvada of the City.

The play speaks a lot about the present day politics, selfishness, deceit, and exploitation, says Dr. Byregowda. .

For the record, it is directed by T.H. Lavakumar of Ranga Samvada while music is provided by Venkatesh Joshi.

By Govind Belgaumkar

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