SOCRATES Director: Rajoo Barot


Novel: Shri Manubhai Pancholi ‘Darshak’
Adaptation: Bharat Dave
Director: Rajoo Barot
Group: Ahmedabad Theatre Group, Ahmedabad
Language: Gujarati
Duration: 2 hrs

The Play
Socrates is a classic testimony of the most remarkable period of Greek history (Peloponnesian War period). The story dawns with the era of the staunchly democratic leader Pericles and his years of contribution towards the society of Athens, and culminates when Socrates, the brilliant thinker, is sentenced to death by a venom quaff. Greeks are known for their superior body built, and exquisite features. However, the story forms Socrates’ image as ‘protuberant lips, flat nose, huge and lost eyes’ which is quite different from typical Greek masculine features. Who can call such a differently looking and thinking human an enlightened personality? What was ‘true wisdom’ to Socrates?

Director’s Note
I have genuinely felt that the nation’s democracy is blemished through the deceitful acts of derision and shady deals. This instigated and inspired me to show the speculum of Socrates to the society that is governed by mockery and corruption. The apostle of Nirvana, Lord Buddha, has paid the utmost reverence to the tyranny of citizens, meagre and lavish alike. This has built within me, an acute conviction and faith in the autonomic form of government. My forthright rationale to stage this classic is to give the society an aspiration as its law systems and governance are undergoing a very delicate phase.

The Director
Rajoo Barot, an NSD Graduate (1977), is an actor, director, singer, documentary film-maker and light designer. He is the founder of the Ahmedabad Theatre Group, and the initiator of documentation and promotion of theatre songs of Gujarat through a group activity titled Tarz-e-Thatter. He has directed several commercial television serials and has travelled extensively with the NSD Repertory Company. He has received many awards such as the Sangeet Natak Akademi’s Gaurav Puraskar, Information Department of Gujarat’s Best Documentary Award, and the Best Playback Singer Award for the film Dikari Mari Vhalno Dario. One of his most appreciated works is Haiye Ham to Tarasnu Na Rahe Tham, which he made for the Pravah Drinking Water & Sanitation Campaign, and which was performed by 50 groups in their own dialects and traditions in more than a thousand villages in Gujarat.

The Playwright
Bharat Dave did Diploma in Direction from National School of Drama, Delhi in 1976. He retired as the Chief Producer, Video Production Group, Development & Educational Communication Unit (DECU) of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Ahmedabad after serving for 32 years. He was in USA for the Fulbright Internship programme in the field of communication technology in television programme productions and public broadcasting. He received the Gaurav Puraskar 1991 for the commendable contribution to Gujarati theatre.

The Group
Ahmedabad Theatre Group, was set up in 1992. It has produced and performed many plays reflecting its vision. ATG has been invited many times to participate in the international drama festival Bharat Rang Mahotsav organised by NSD, New Delhi and has also participated in the 8th Theatre Olympics with the production Paritraan at Mumbai.

Cast & Credits
Socrates: Praveen Hirpara
Xanthippe: Deepti Joshi
Crito: Priyank Upadhyay
Media: Garima Bharadwaj
Crishiyas: Kamal Joshi
Aspasia: Vaibhavi Bhatt
Pericles: Rajoo Barot
Apollodorus: Vaishakh Rathod
Judge: Chirag Parekh, Nitish Parekh
Meno: Harshdeep Jadeja
Harmippus: Gopal Barot
Anateus: Vishal Shah
Ajes: Praful Panchal
Meletus: Dhruv Pandit
Jailor: Harshdeep Jadeja
Soldiers: Harshdeep Jadeja, Jigar Shah
Chorus: Female Mausam Mehta, Malka Mehta, Nupoor Shah, Vaibhavi Bhatt, Neeta Pattani, Deepti Joshi,
Garima Bharadwaj
Chorus: Male Rajoo Barot, Jigar Shah, Harshdeep Jadeja, Priyank Upadhyay

Stage Manager: Chirag Parekh
Back Stage: Dhruv Pandit, Neeta Pattani, Anil Rathod, Vishal Chauhan, Shubham Balapure, Ravi Patil
Set & Lights: Kabir Thakor
Lights Operation: Kamal Joshi, Vaishakh Rathod, Dhruv Pandit
Costumes & Props: Arpita Dhagat
Assistant: Vaibhavi Bhatt
Chorus Text: Chirag Tripathi
Music: Nitish Parekh
Assistant: Priyank Upadhyay
Music Operator: Nitish Parekh, Dhruv Pandit
Make-up: Shabana

Novel: Shri Manubhai Pancholi ‘Darshak’
Adaptation: Bharat Dave
Direction: Rajoo Barot

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: and two Ezines on Culture called Stage Buzz at url: 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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