Welcome Zindagi


Welcome Zindagi examines the relationship between a Mumbai family- a father, son, and
mother. An ordinary head clerk, Arun Ganatra, is on the verge of retirement. His wife, Bhanu
Ganatra, is a simple but sensible woman. Their son, Vivek Ganatra, has recently completed his
Masters in Business Administration. At the heart of the story is the father-son relationship.
While secretly caring for each other, they have different mindsets that prevent them from
communicating. The play delves into the complex emotions and psychological interplay that
prevents people from accepting another's point of view. In all of this the mother is the bridging
factor, doing her best to set things right. She is also a tongue-in-cheek Sutradhar (narrator) with
the keenest sense of humor.

Director’s Note
Welcome Zindagi is written by Saumya Joshi, a successful young playwright from Gujarat. I
believe that theatre enthusiasts typically watch original Hindi plays and, translations and
adaptations of western plays. Unfortunately, regional plays are no longer being translated into
Hindi and tend to not get the recognition they deserve. The 1970’s-80’s were a time when Indian
theatre was introduced to many plays written in regional languages and translated or adapted into
Hindi. These plays enriched the theater scene and I feel it is time we reintroduced translations
and adaptations from regional languages. Welcome Zindagi is my attempt at this goal.

The Director
Suresh Bhardwaj graduated from National School of Drama in 1980. He recently retired as
Professor of Theatre Lighting from National School of Drama. He is the former Technical
Director of Rangmandal, Bharat Bhavan, Bhopal. He is the founder member of Sambhav- a
theatre group of Delhi. Along with theater he has also worked in films and television. He created
and directed popular programmes like Aap Ki Adalat and Lekhu. He has conducted a number of
theatre workshops throughout the country and abroad. He served as a member of the
International Jury for UNESCO's meet of World Drama School in Sinaia. His major theatre
productions includ Adhe Adhure, Prem Samvaad, and Chatushkon. He is recipient of prestigious
Sangeet Natak Akademi Award and Rosco (UK) award of Chaman Lal Memorial Society.

The Playwright
Saumya Joshi is a Gujarati poet, writer, playwright, director and actor. Joshi founded the Fade-In
Theatre in 2010 and in September 2011 quit his job to pursue the theatre full-time. He is best
known for his plays Welcome Zindagi, 102 Not Out and Dost Chokkas Ahin Ek Nagar Vastu
Hatu, a musical black comedy based on the 2002 Gujarat Riots.
In 2013 he was awarded the Chandravadan Chimanlal Mehta Award for his contributions to
Gujarati theatre. He has also received the Yuva Gaurav Puraskar (2007), the Takhtasin Parmer

Prize (2008- 09), the Ravji Patel Award, the Balvantray Thakor Prize and the Sadbhavna Award

The Translator
Rahil Bhardwaj did his graduation in theatre from M. S. University, Baroda and got his PG
diploma from National School of Drama in 2016 with specialization in Acting.

The Group
Akar Kala Sangam (AKS) is a group of artists interested in innovative drama. Many of them
have studied at institutes like NSD, Bhartendu Natya Akademi, and Shri Ram Center. AKS
participates in many workshops to keep its members up to date with different styles of
contemporary theatre. Their artists also get an opportunity to work with global pioneers and
leading theatre experts.
AKS has participated in Bharat Rang Mahotsav (2002 and 2003) with their productions Prem
Samvaad and Saari Raat. Aur Agle Saal performed in 2004 was viewed as one of the best plays
in Delhi and included in the Bhartendu Natya Mahotsav of Sahitya Kala Parishad. AKS has an
extensive repertoire, which it performs throughout the country.

Cast & Credits

Arun Ganatra Ramesh Manchanda
Bhanu Ganatra Anju Jaitley
Vivek Ganatra Rahil Bhardwaj
Lights Kiran Kumar Sharma
Set Execution Ram Pratap
Music Suman Vaidya
Photography S. Thyagrajan
Video Recording Sahil Bhardwaj
Costume and Properties Veena Sharma
Make-Up Ramesh Manchanda, Anju Jaitley & Rahil
Poster and Brochure Rahil Bhardwaj
Asst. Director Suman Vaidya
Playwright Saumya Joshi
Translator Rahil Bhardwaj
Design & Direction Suresh Bhardwaj


Manohar Khushalani

Manohar Khushalani

Prof. Manohar Khushalani is a former Visiting Faculty at Indraprastha Institute of Information Technology, Delhi. The courses he taught were: Animation & Graphics, Non-Linear Editing for Film and Radio and Theatre Appreciation.  He has won a total of nine Excellence in Teaching awards for all the courses he has taught at IIITD Earlier he retired from Government of India as Director Environment Management, Central Water Commission and held many senior positions in the Government Based on a Belief that Culture and Environment are the two keys to global sustainability , Manohar Khushalani has launched two portals: A Portal on Environment and Water called One Vorld at url: www.onevorld.org and two Ezines on Culture called Stage Buzz at url: www.stagebuzz.in He has taught extensively in varied subjects such as Dam Safety, Instrumentation, CAD, IT, Animation, Theatre, Newspaper Editing. He has conducted Courses on Environment Management, Water Shed Development, Team Building and Personality Development. He was an Expert Member of Prasar Bharti’s Committee for Grading & Short listing Films for Telecast on all channels of Doordarshan.  He is a Radio Anchor for All India Radio and has moderated several programs for the Rajdhani Channel He is a well-known Theatre Actor/Director and Critic, has been involved in theatre since 1977. He has worked as an actor in over 50 plays with almost every leading director/Actor in the Country including Badal Sircar, Feisal Alkazi, Amal Allana, M.K. Raina, Anuradha Kapoor, Maya Rao, Manohar Singh, Prasanna, Rati Bartholomew and Sushmita Mukherji. He has been active in the social sector as a street theatre activist. As a member of Workshop Theatre, Theatre Union and Prayog, Khushalani has participated in street plays taking up major social issues such as dowry, bride burning, Sati, banned medicinal drugs and communalism. Dario Fo’s Accidental Death of an Anarchist and Can’t Pay Won’t Pay, both directed by him, received rave notices from critics and audiences alike. Other plays directed by him include Badal Sircar’s, Sagina Mahato and Boris Vian’s Empire Builders for Ruchika Theatre Group. Khushalani has also acted in a few films such as Sudhir Mishra's Hazaron Khwaishen Aisi , Shoojit Sircar’s Madras Café and Pradeep Krishan's Annie Gives Those Ones. He is an Animator & Graphics Designer and has directed a number of documentaries. He also held a number of Honorary positions and was President of North India Films Association, He was the Chairman of  Jury for UGC CEC Educational Films Competition and has been on their Preview Committee since last many years. He was on the preview committee of Door Darshan Channel 3, was a visiting Professor at National School of Drama, New Delhi, and Film & Television Institute of India, Pune, AJKMCRR, Jamia Milia Islamia and Professor in Media at FICT, Delhi  He has judged a large number of Drama Competitions and conducted a number of Theatre / Management Games Workshops with Institutions such as AIIMS, NTPC, CWPRS, NWA, Karve Nari Prakshishan Sansthan, FICT, IIT, MAMC, Gargi College, KNC, Tagore International School and Vivekananda School. He is a Theatre Critic for IIC Diary, has also been a Columnist with Midday and Pioneer Daily and wrote Column's Called Culture Cocktail and Footlights Respectively. He was also the Guest Editor for an issue on Folk Theatre of ICCR Journal Horizons. He has written for Times of Indian, Hindustan Times, Blitz, Hard News, Hindu Business Line, Theatre India & Art Times. He has designed dams and hydraulic structures for the Government. He is a programmer and has developed Engineering design software in Fortran. He is a co-author of Irrigation Practice & Design (Vol 1 to5 - 1500 pages) published by Oxford & IBH and sponsored by National Book Trust. He has been a Director, Environment and Sociology, at the National Water Academy, Khadakwasla and Director, Environment Management Directorate, Central Water Commission and Member Secretary, National Environmental Monitoring Committee for River Valley Projects. He was also Director of Instrumentation Directorate in the Dam Safety Organisation. He was Chief General Manager and Head of Water Resources at Scott Wilson and is an accredited consultant with numerous other organizations He is a Delhi Public School, BITS Pilani, IIT Delhi and FTI Pune Alumini. He was also the President of BITS Pilani Alumni Association, Pune.

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