Plaban Basus’ Play: Jamila

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Playwright & Director: Plaban Basu
Group: Moulali Rangashilpi, Kolkata
Language: Hindi
Duration: 2 hrs 10 mins

The Play
It becomes an obsession with young Syed, a painter, to paint the portraits of his lady love, Jamila.
By a strange quirk of fate, Jamila arrives at Syed’s hillside village as a bride of Sadiq, Syed’s elder brother. Everyone takes it for a case of love marriage, which it is not. Defeated by Jamila in a horse-cart race, Sadiq abducts and forcibly marries and brings her to the house. Jamila tries her level best to reconcile with the situation by being dutiful to all the members of her newly acquired family. But her self-respect gets wounded at every step. The responsibility of selling crops falls upon Jamila’s shoulder in a nearly market. There she meets a meek and outwardly weak person, Daniar, and discovers a strong sense of self-dignity in his character. A new chapter of life unfolds itself heralding the dawn of a new journey for Jamila.

Director’s Note
To me Jamila is not just a play, it is a journey of self-search, not just Jamila’s but of all the oppressed women out there. As a director I faced several challenges from this novel. The story is written in such a way that it has a lot of cinematic elements. So to build a play was a big challenge. Jamila, for me, is a story of redemption, liberation of love from social bondage. It is a play about a woman’s struggle to earn the freedom to express her love. Therefore to be able to work as the director of this play was truly a rewarding experience and an accomplishment.

The Director & Playwright
Plaban Basu is an actor and theatre director who is active in media as well. He is a science graduate and practices martial art. In 2004, he formed a theatre group Rangashilpi. Plaban has worked with eminent directors like Usha Ganguly, Tim Supple, Habib Tanvir, Abanti Chakraborty, Kanhaiya Lal, Biplob Bandyopadhyay, Maloy Roy and many others. Plaban has also been working with children at railway stations and streets and with people with disabilities. He has written and directed plays focused on the rights of disabled children and on various other human rights. He has also acted in several Bengali and Hindi serials and films.

The Group
Rangashilpi was established in August 2004. In the past 15 years the group has experienced a journey of Bengali & Hindi productions of theatre, either on the streets or on stage, and concerning various subject matters ranging from social issues, factual facts of history, to the fragrance of folk culture.
The group has restlessly engaged in theatre workshops with disabled women, railway workers, schools, street children and village youth. Rangashilpi has been working with various non-government organisations, to improve their mental and social condition through theatre. Rangashilpi organizes regular events like Mukho Mukhi, Musafirana and Salam Safder to sustain the cultural practice. Rangashilpi productions have been staged successfully at various prestigious festivals.

Cast & Credits
On Stage                     Sushil Kanti, Ashok Chakroborty, Bimal Chandra Dey, Partha Sarathi Basu, Shakti Chakroborty, Tarun Kumar Nath, Subanti Banerjee, Dalia Pramanick, Shraboni Bonik, Ruposree Majumdar, Kathanjali Pramanick, Suchandra Bhattacharyay, Sabaree Sen, Bishwabandhu Choudhury, Saibal Sarkhel, Writtick Basak, Madhusudan Dhar, Saikat Roy, Shanta Swarup Mukherjee, Ritabrato Naskar

Light Operator               Sashankha Mondal
Music Operator             Biswajit Biswas
Light Assistant              Brindaban Das
Make-up                        Pijush Ghosh Choudhury

Story                             Chingiz Aitmatov
Playwright
& Director                      Plaban Basu

Contacts
Director,
Moulali Rangashilpi
90B, K. G. Bose Sarani,
Kolkata- 700085
M: +91 9836368767, 9062159118, 9770642782

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Manohar Khushalani

Prof. Manohar Khushalani is Currently a Visiting Faculty at Indraprastha Institute of Information Technology, Delhi. The courses he teaches are: Animation & Graphics, Non-Linear Editing for Film and Radio and Theatre Appreciation.  He has won Excellence in Teaching awards for all the courses he has taught at IIITD 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 & www.stagebuzz.info 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 is 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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