Girish Karnad’s Play: Bhanga Bhanga Chhobi

Playwright: Girish Karnad
Translator: Srotoswini Dey
Director: Tulika Das
Group: Kolkata Bohuswar, Kolkata
Language: Bengali
Duration: 1 hr 10 mins

The Play
The play opens with Manjula Ray in a television studio, giving one of her countless interviews. Manjula is a successful Bengali writer whose first novel in English has got favourable reviews from the West. She talks about her life and her darling husband Pramod, and fondly reminisces about Malini, her wheel-chair bound sister. After the interview, Manjula is ready to leave the studio but is confronted by an image. Gradually Manjula starts unfolding her life showing two facets of the same character. The conversations between the character on stage and the chhaya-murti go on and Manjula peels layer after layer, revealing raw emotions and complexities of the relationship between Manjula, Promod and Malini. We can relate to both Manjula and Malini… all of us being flawed in some way or the other, and that’s what makes us human.

Director’s Note
I wanted to explore the text of Girish Karnad’s Broken Images with my own understanding of Manjula, the lady portraying two facets of the same character. Despite all her shortcomings and flaws, she did not degenerate into a stereotypical vamp. Although she had made unforgivable mistakes, wasn’t there enough reason for her to exercise duplicity and betrayal? I found myself asking this question and wanting to see the larger picture through another prism. It has taken years for the Bengali stage to come up with an adaptation of the 2004 play. The Bengali translation by Srotoswini Dey Bhanga Bhanga Chhobi helped me to stage it. Theatre, I feel, should not be just entertainment. It should encourage a bit of soul searching too. I am thankful to Mr. Karnad, Srotoswini and the team of Bhanga Bhanga Chhobi of Kolkata Bohuswar to help me do just that.

The Director
Tulika Das is an actor and director of Kolkata Bohuswar. After her M.A. in Theatre, she joined Bohurupee and acted in several plays under the direction of Kumar Roy and also directed four plays, which received a lot of appreciation. In Kolkata Bohuswar, she directed Choturthir Jor, Bhanga Bhanga Chhobi, Agnipaak and Anandamath. Tulika is working with under privileged children and young adults, using theatre as a tool to build their capacity to overcome the barriers around them. She is actively involved in Human Rights movement of people with disabilities.

The Translator
Srotoswini Dey, M.A., MPhil, is an Assistant Professor of English Language in a college of West Bengal. She is a theatre lover and is trying her best to enrich the Bengali theatre through the translation of scripts of famous playwrights who have written in other Indian languages. She has also published a book Re-reading of Vijay Tendulkar’s Ghasiram Kotwal: a Critical Study of Vijay Tendulkar.

The Group
Kolkata Bohuswar was established in January 2017 in order to create and promote innovative theatre. The word ‘Bohuswar’ means a collective of different kinds of voices. True to its name, Bohuswar is home to individuals of different ages, genders, religious identities and places of residence. The group has produced the play Choturthir Jor, based on a story by Ismat Chugtai (selected for 8th Theatre Olympic), Bhanga Bhanga Chhobi, based on Girish Karnad’s Broken Images (selected for 21st BRM), and Agnipaak, based on a play by Mahesh Dattani. The group had organised a November theatre festival (2018) along with a theatre workshop for young theatre workers with Ruchika theatre group, Delhi. The group facilitates inclusive theatre workshops for the under-privileged children in the rural areas of West Bengal.

Cast & Credits
On stage Sukriti Lahori Sinha, Piyali Guha Roy, Tulika Das

Off stage Mayukh Dutta, Monomita Chaudhury, Rashmi Natua, Sampreeti Chakraborty
Sumita Basu, Biswajit Roy, Arka Ranjan Bhattacharya, Tanmoy Das, Bobby
Kar, Arko Roy, Tapas Roy, Indrajit Mukhoty
Music Kalyan Sen Barat
Set & Light Gagandeep
Make-up Piali Samanta

Playwright Girish Karnad
Translator Srotoswini Dey
Director Tulika Das

Kolkata Bohuswar
18, Deodar Street, Kolkata- 700019
West Bengal
M: +91 9830262165, 9830872209
E: bohuswar.kolkata@gmail.com

August Strindberg’s Play: Babai

Playwright: August Strindberg
Adapter & Director: Ishita Mukhopadhyay
Group: Ushneek, Kolkata
Language: Bengali
Duration: 2 hrs 10 mins

The Play
Babai is a trans-creation of August Strindberg’s The Father. Taking inspiration from the original, playwright Ishita Mukherjee has adapted the play into an Indian locale and has given it a relevance to the socio-economic reality of today. The play is about an extremely complex relationship between a husband and a wife, which culminates when it comes to the question of the future of their only child. Not wanting to lose her custody over the child, the wife induces suspicion in her husband’s mind about him not being the real father, thus pushing the husband into an abyss of doubts, and taking over the household and making everybody believe that the husband’s sanity is under question. The husband, unable to bear this painful predicament, gradually loses his mind and in the end the family, under the vigilance of his wife, sends him to an asylum. The play talks about the eternal power politics between man and woman, state and religion, and society and individual.

Director’s Note
Strindberg’s The Father is considered as one of the finest naturalistic psychological drama. Often it is seen as a tragedy of a husband falling into the trap laid by his wife. As a woman director I have a different take on that. To me, Strindberg created sympathetic characters. He created a strong impression of male dominant society of his era which is quite relevant even today. To me, the wife is also a victim of patriarchy just like her husband is. The proof of fatherhood is instrumental to form a social-respectability which is inspired and instructed by the voice of patriarchy. I found that the play not only speaks about the gender politics but also speaks about the mistrust, unfaithfulness, loss of trust and the general lack of communication between man and society, society and politics, politics and religion, religion and concept, concept and individual.

The Director& Playwright
Active in Bengali theatre for more than three decades, Ishita Mukhopadhyay has created her place as an important theatre director of our times. As a director, she brings a sensibility in her work that is the result of her experience as a woman. She has well-formed views about group theatre, the economy of theatre and the challenges of being political in theatre. Over the years, Ishita Mukhopadhyay has directed a host of plays of which Ghar, Kamalkamini, Gawaharjan, Khela Bhangar Khela, Kallu Mama, Ora Tinjon and Agnijatak deserve special mention. Ishita has received numerous awards as the best director, some of which are Uttam Kumar Award, Pramathesh Barua Award, All India Critics Award, All India Women Association Award, Kalaratan Award and many more.

The Group
Ushneek was formed in 1984 by enthusiastic young theatre lovers and was registered in 1991. Till date Ushneek has produced 14 full-length plays, 5 one-act plays and 3 audio plays. Ushneek has participated in all the major theatre festivals in India like Nandikar Natya Utsav, Natya Academy Natya Utsav, Yuva Utkal International Festival, Sangeet Natak Academy festival, and 8th Theatre Olympics etc. Ushneek has travelled with its productions to almost all the major cities of India, not to mention the small towns. Besides staging plays Ushneek has also organised seminars and held workshops to enhance its capability to do better theatre. Ushneek has organised theatre workshops for mentally challenged children for two NGOs and has also worked with the male and female sex workers of Kolkata.

Cast & Credits
Professor Dipankar Bose Debshankar Halder
Doctor Samanta Subhasish Mukherjee
Maya Srijata Bhattacharjee
Mashi Chhanda Chatterjee
Mimi Arunika Dey
Dinu Thakur Prabir Dutta
Nakul Majhi Saptarshi Bhowmick

Light Designer Debabrata Sarkar
Music Ablu Bhattacharjee
Make-up Aloke Debnath
Set Designer Sanchayan Ghosh
Sound Operation Kalyan Sarkar
Crew Sujit Chotttopadhyay, Subhojit Bakshi,
Chitra Dey, Shreyashi Barua,
Ayan Debnath, Deepan Roy,
Parthosarathi Ghosh, Arnab Acharyya,
Sourav Ghosh Roy, Sushmita Halder,
Soumen Halde, Pinaki Das,
Sumitra Das, Debabrata Sarkar,
Ritesh Kumar Mondal

Playwright & Director Ishita Mukhopadhyay

Director, Ushneek
6, Ashutosh Chowdhury Avenue,
Kolkata – 19, West Bengal
Ph: 033-22810326
M: +91 9433582323
E: ushneekishita@gmail.com

Paresh Pasad Parit’s Play: Mahishasur Mardini

Director: Paresh Prasad Parit
Group: Purulia Chhau Dance Academy, Jharkhand
Language: Bengali
Duration: 1 hr 15 mins

The Form
Chhau is a traditional dance-drama performed during the Chaitra festival (April-May) in the adjoining districts of the three bordering states of West Bengal, Bihar and Orissa. Ramayana and Mahabharata, as well as stories from the Puranas, and those from everyday life, are portrayed through this masked dance form. A Chhau troupe consists of 15-20 artists. The musical instruments used are drums (dhol) and flute (shehnai).

The Play
The performance begins with an invocation to Lord Ganesha, and then to Lord Kartikeya.
Mahishasura, a demon who has created terror in the world of the gods, has captured heaven, earth and the nether world. Goddess Durga, who rides a lion and has been bestowed upon with weapons from Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh to fight Mahishasura, after a long battle slays him.

The Director
Paresh Prasad Parit is a well-known artist of Purulia Chhau and is popularly known as Guru Paresh Kumar. He is an M. A. in History and a trained dancer, musician, composer and choreographer who is dedicated to this art since childhood. His inspirations have been Padma Shri Gambhir Singh Mura, Padma Shri Nepal Mahto, Ustad Juru Kumar, Ustad Laal Mahto, Ustad Rasu Sahis, Ustad Gopal Suri (Mandal), and his own parents. He was trained under Chhau Guru Sudhir Kumar who is an international famed artist of Purulia Chhau. He has struggled for the preservation and promotion of Purulia Chhau in the borderlands of West Bengal & Jharkhand, hoping for a bright future of this traditional form. He has received the Fellowship for Purulia Chhau from the Ministry of Culture, Govt. of India. He has also been awarded the Panchal Ratna Award from All India Cultural Association (Regd.), Chhau Guru Award, MRD cultural award, and Jharkhand Sanskritik Samman. He is a member of CCRT Regional Selection Committee under the aegis of Ministry of Culture, Govt. of India.

The Group
Purulia Chhau Dance Academy was founded in 1985. The group is based in the village Jamdih, under Tila Panchayat, Nimdih block of Seraikela Kharsawan, a district state of Jharkhand in India and a border-land area of West Bengal. It is a troupe and training centre aiming to preserve and promote Purulia Chhau. The dancers and musicians of the group are farmers, farm labourers and students. Although the academy is dedicated to Purulia Chhau, it actively participates in social service as well. It is registered under the Govt. of Jharkhand and empanelled under Indian Council for Cultural Relations. It has performed in cities like Delhi, Kolkata, Patna, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Bangalore, Ahmadabad, Gurgaon, Bareilly, Agra, Jaipur, Baripada etc. The academy has received many prizes and awards in festivals and fairs held at different places in India.

Cast & Credits
Lord Ganesha Swapan Machhua
Lord Kartikeya Gunadhar Kumar
Goddess Durga Falari Kumar
Demon Mahishasur Dhiren Singh
Devil Lakhindar Machua, Parmeshwar Majhi,
Alang Chand Kumar, Sudip Yogi
Laxmi Gansh Karmakar
Saraswati Gayapati Mahato
Lion Ram Nath Singh, Ram Charan Singh
Peacock Bhut Nath Machua
Dhol Dhar Kalindi
Shahnai Shikant Kalindi
Maracas Bibhuti Singh
Tasa / Nagara Purna Kalindi
Casio Bhism Dev Machhua
Prompter Udai Mahali

Director & Group Leader Paresh Prasad Parit

Purulia Chhau Dance Academy
Jamdih, P.O. Tilla
P.S. Nimdih, S.D. Chandil
Distt. Seraikela Kharsawan
Jharkhand – 832401
M: +91 8709364919, 9955332690
E: pareshkumar99@gmail.com

Atik Rehman’s Play: Mrityu Ghar

Playwright: Dea Loher
Adaptation: Atik Rahman
Director: Mukul Ahmed
Group: Mukul Ghetto Tigers, Bangladesh
Language: Bengali
Duration: 1 hr 5 mins

The Play
In this play an hour takes us inside the heads of Asha, Kalpana and Bina as they pit themselves against their torturer, Zafar, who has the power to decide their fate in the jail. Eventually Asha will be placed in a gas chamber. Asha’s resistance and ability to turn the tables on her torturer provide one of the most compelling stories. The central question of the play relates to what someone should sacrifice for their relationships, dignity and political affiliation. Asha’s story is a searing tale of survival as she, along with her fellow prisoners, struggles to hold onto her disintegrating sense of self.

Director’s Note
Mrityu Ghar is an adaptation of Dea Loher’s first play Olga’s Room (published in 1992). Dea Loher is one of the most celebrated playwrights of Germany today. Special thanks to Shameem Chawdhury for a fluid translation. I would like to acknowledge the contribution of Atik Rahman for accepting the offer to adapt Olga’s Room into a new play.

The Director
Mukul Ahmed grew up in Bangladesh and was taught at home till the age of 10 by his mother. His early memory is filled with ritual festivals, open-air music concerts, chaotic street markets, tropical calamity and community living. The dual heritage and displacement help him being unreasonably optimistic and rationally helpless, someone with love for classics and modernism, rebellion and discipline. He likes to explore the role of arts and imagination in creating new connections between people and the community in order to strengthen participation in community life. In 2007 he completed the Birkbeck MFA Theatre Directing programme. He has since directed a series of classics, new writing and play readings. Mukul has Staff Directed at the National Theatre, England. He is a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, UK.

The Playwright
Atik Rahman is a theatre practitioner (performer, script writer and light designer) based in Bangladesh. He completed B.A. (Hons.) and M.A. in Theatre from the Department of Theatre, University of Dhaka, Bangladesh. He has participated in numerous national and international theatre festivals in Bangladesh, India and the UK as actor, designer and musician. He is currently working as a script writer, performer and light designer for Mukul and Ghetto Tigers (Bangladesh), and is also a freelance theatre worker and a performer for ‘theatreX’ in Bangladesh.

The Group
Mukul and Ghetto Tigers is a UK and Bangladesh based theatre company that offers story, relationship and entertainment to the regular and non-theatre going audience. We take genuine interest in new writing and world classics. MGT is a platform for emerging talents. Our aim is to mentor and nurture the new comers and offer them the opportunity to excel in their respective fields. Our mantra is re-imagination, innovation and collaboration. We aim to develop a community-oriented, quality training service in a fun and safe environment by staff committed to continuously developing their skills. We also strive to create new audiences of performing arts from non-theatre going and disadvantaged communities.

Cast & Credits
Asha Usha Ganguli
Kalpana Lopamudra Guha Neogi
Beena Swagata Biswas
Zafar Biswajit Das

Light Designer Mirza Shahkhesep Sakib
Set Designer Sabiha Ambereen Haque
Sound Designer Tarun Jasani
Sound and Video Projection Operator Atik Rahman
Stage Manager Polash Rahman
Documentation Shishir Karim
Subtitles Shubhaluxmi Mukherjee
Production Manager Tahmina Shaily
Publicity Material Mong Mong Sho
Video Projection Material Shishir Karim, Shishir Imran
Video Performer Novera Yesmin

Playwright Atik Rahman
Director Mukul Ahmed

Director, Mukul Ghetto Tigers
Shop No- 125, 253/254 Elephant Road
Emporium, Katabon, Dhara, Bangaladesh
M: +88-0172-0907957
E: mukul_tiger@yahoo.com

Chandan Sen’s Play: Damini Hay

Playwright: Chandan Sen
Director: Meghnad Bhattacharya
Group: Sayak, Kolkata
Language: Bengali
Duration: 1 hr 30 mins

The Play
Damini Hay is an elaborate and symbolic portrayal of how a woman stricken by poverty remains unburdened by it. The play is a tribute to a woman’s inner strength and ability to rise above problems such as grinding poverty. The situation of the play is a poverty-stricken, out-of-the-way village of Bengal where hunger, exploitation, greed, and deception reign unbridled, and the poorest subalterns living there grow-up believing everything is an unchangeable lot.

Director’s Note
The space between the parameters of poverty and utopia is difficult to describe and justify. The play moves between the real and the surreal, between poverty and hunger, and dreams of utopia and motherhood. The play is also concentrated on well established truths about poverty and exploitation, most of which is man-made. Simultaneously it pays tribute to a woman’s inner strength and ability to rise above grinding poverty.
The set design demonstrates an experiment of a dwelling place that is visually in ruins and is a representation of the stark reality of poverty that has gripped even those who claim the right to live. The light and music have been designed to describe the dreams of motherhood that the protagonist has.

The Director
Meghnad Bhattacharya has directed the translations as well as adaptations of plays by great masters like Tolstoy, Brecht, Schedrin, Somerset Maugham and Moliere. His noted play productions are Dui Hujurer Gappo, Gnan Briksher Fol, Daibaddha, Bashbhumi, Badhutantra, Karnaboti, Aa Awa Ka Kha, Sanjhbela, Dildar, Pinki Buli, Dhrubatara, Damini Hay, Passing Show, Premkatha etc. Meghnad has also directed three plays in Canada produced by Prabasi Toronto in 2006, 2008, 2013 and three plays in USA, one produced by Epic Actors’ Workshop in 2013, and two by Spotlight Columbus in 2015 and 2016. He has also directed a play Charduar by Gandhar Kolkata in 2002. Apart from theatre Meghnad has directed several TV plays in different channels and has also acted in at least 50 TV serials and films.

The Playwright
One of the frontline playwrights of Bengal, Chandan Sen has written more than hundred plays including his adaptations and inspired works of Schedrin, Chekov, Tolstoy, Lorca, Eugene O’ Neil, Sartre, Brecht and others for the Bengali Theatre. His plays have been translated in Hindi, Assamese, Oriya, and Telugu.

The Group
Sayak has the pride distinction of staging more than 3000 performances of 26 full length and 7 short plays, not only in all corners of West Bengal but also in different parts of the country and in countries like U.S.A. Canada, Bangladesh and Kuwait. Sayak, with its large involvement in multifarious theatrical activities has built a theatre hall Bijon Theatre, in North Kolkata. The group also conducts lectures on dramaturgy, and organises festivals of selected Bengali plays and children theatre workshops, and publishes a yearly theatre journal Sayak Natyapatra.

Cast & Credits
Lakshmikanta Biswanath Roy
Ganesh Pradip Das
Kartick Uttam Kumar Dey
Damini Kathakali
Jabali Aruna Mukherjee
Judhistir (Chief) Subrata Bhawol
Kalyan (Head Clerk) Dhurjati De
Bonomali (Tout) Meghnad Bhattacharya
Chakka Ajoy Sankar Banerjee
Panja Goutam Sen
Gunga Jayanta Das
Farash Samar Das
Villagers & Ghosts Kartick Maitra, Santanu Bhattacharya, Susanta Dasgupta,
Samir Deb, Prasenjit Kundu, Samiran Bhattacharya,
Parimal Chakraborty

Music Subhendu Maity
Light Joy Sen
Stage Soumik, Piyali
Choreography Subhendu Mukherjee, Kabir Sen Barat
Make-up Panchanan Manna
Light Operator Somenath Chattapadhyay
Background Music Swapan Bandhopadhyay
Music Operator Asit Maitra

Story Amar Mitra
Playwright Chandan Sen
Director Meghnad Bhattacharya

Director, Sayak
C/o 192 G, Acharya Prafulla Chandra Road.
Shyambazar, Kolkata- 700 004
Ph: 033-25551973
M: +91 9230517473, 9830716207
E: sayak_theatre@yahoo.co.in

Rakesh Ghosh’s Play: Upal Bhaadury… Tale of a Dead Star

Playwright & Director: Rakesh Ghosh
Group: Dum Dum Shabdomugdho Naatyokendra, Kolkata
Language: Bengali
Duration: 1 hr 50 mins

The Play
Upal Bhaadury…Tale of a Dead Star is based on the life of a living legend Sri Chapal Bhaduri. He is a renowned female impersonator in Bengali Jatra. As a teenager, after the death of his mother, Chapal Bhaduri came to perform in Jatra for the purpose of raising money due to severe poverty. His voice was girlish, so he got a chance to play female roles. For this, he had to endure humiliation by the society. After a while, Chapal Bhaduri became ‘Chapal Rani’. Gradually he became a popular actor and a star of Jatra world. But the moment female artists joined the Jatra, Chapal Rani was rejected. The ‘rani’ began to work as a servant in households for survival. In exchange for a little money, he started singing bhajans in front of the temples, slums and streets of Kolkata. Someone from theatre saw his performance and gave him an opportunity to perform in theatre. According to Chapal, Jatra has given him money, but theatre has given him respect. Chapal Bhaduri has played the role of Upal Bhaduri in this play.

Director’s Note
What does a creative artiste desire? He wants wealth, fame, honour. But all of these become insubstantial at a certain point in his life. What drives him relentlessly is an intense desire to create exquisite art. This drive gives him fulfilment, guiding him to explore new horizons in his creativity.
Upal Bhaadury…Tale of a Dead Star is not just a play, but also the journey of an actor who has devoted his life to art. His life is a tutorial to be followed not only by actors but by artists from any field. The play takes on a complex, layered and nuanced meaning, stirring up in its vortex all the intricate shades of love, dependence, endearment, affection, desire, illusion and… betrayal. It is a strange conflict between the flesh and the spirit, the performing body and the soul, the inner workings of the artiste’s mind and its manifestation in performance.
I felt the importance of making the audience aware of this forgotten ‘rani’ or ‘diva’ of Bengali theatre, and bring him again into limelight when he is in his 80’s, when he is all alone staying in an old age home in his last days. It is a tribute to our beloved Jatra-diva Chapal Rani.

The Director & Playwright
Rakesh Ghosh is a professional playwright, director & actor for theatre, television & films. In the beginning, he joined Dwandik, a Howrah based theatre group & performed in its plays. He also worked with the theatre group Natadha. In 2006 he formed his own theatre group Shabdomugdho for which he writes and directs plays. Rakesh has worked with legendary theatre personalities. He has worked under Sri Manoj Mitra. His group had been selected for National Theatre Festival organized by State Govt. of West Bengal in 2017 & 2019. Rakesh Ghosh has worked as a writer and assistant director for television serials and films. He has also acted in short films, television serials & telefilms. Presently he is working with Star Jalsa as a story developer and script writer.

The Group
Dum Dum Shabdomugdho Naatyokendra was established in the year 2006. The organization has produced 16 contemporary productions till date and has performed all over West Bengal, in the 20th Bharat Rang Mahotsav, and at 4th National Theatre Festival 2018 organized by Minerva Natasanskriti Charcha Kendra, Natya Mela.

Cast & Credits
Upal Bhaadury Chapal Bhaduri
Gour Mohan Rakesh Ghosh
Madhab Pradip Roy
Pratap Jayesh Laha
Masterji Nilanjan Saha
Chorus Aninda Roy, Prasenjit Kundu, Raja Rajbhar, Abhijit Dutta, Rahul Roy, Abhi Banerjee, Barnali Roy Chowdhury, Sampreeti Chakraborty, Priyanka Das, Pampa Goswami, Ranjan Bose

Light Design Debabrat Sarkar
Scenography Atanu Sarkar
Music Recording & Mixing Abhijit Acharya & Jagmohan Singh
Make-up SK Israfil
Costume Ranjan Bose
Sound Operator Bandan Mishra
Art Setup Manindra Bera
Vocals Ranjan Bose, Abhijit Acharya, Prakriti Dutta, Jagmohan Singh

Playwright & Director Rakesh Ghosh

Dum Dum Shabdomugdho Naatyokendra
F-26/5, Karunamoyee Housing Estate
Salt Lake City, Kolkata- 700091
M: +91 9830174823, 7044237333, 9339538902
E: dumdum.shabdomugdho@gmail.com

Shib Mukhopadhyay’s Play: Mahabharat 2

Playwright: Shib Mukhopadhyay
Director: Arna Mukhopadhyay
Group: Natadha, Howrah
Language: Bengali
Duration: 3 hrs

The Play
The period of fourteen years of exile is over for the Pandavas. It is the time for the law to take its rightful course; Duryodhana is supposed to hand-over the land of Indraprastha to his cousins. He denies returning the rightful share. Draupadi urges the Pandavas towards war. At this moment of crisis, the Pandavas seek Krishna’s advice. Krishna agrees to come to Hastinapur for discussion. He meets Bhishma Pitamaha, Karna, Shakuni and Gandhari and requests them not to wage a war. Duryodhana agrees to return the land but there is a mass upsurge against returning the land to the Pandavas. War becomes inevitable.

Director’s Note
Man desires everything for himself. He wishes to possess not only that which is his but also that what is not. In this greed he forgets that he too has a past, he too has kin and kinsmen. Slowly and steadily man moves towards decadence where everything is denuded and only the ‘me’ remains, isolated in the abyss of time. We have tried to understand the pulse of the modern times in the mirror of the mythology. We have tried to convey the stereotypes of human reality in the characters of Duryodhana, Krishna, Draupadi, Arjuna etc. We delved deep to understand the changing facade of modern urban civilization and were amazed to find that Mahabharata is so contemporary!

The Director
Arna Mukhopadhyay is an actor and director with an M. Phil in Dramatic Arts. He started directing plays in the year 2007. Some of the plays directed by him are Ebong Socrates, Caesar-O-Cleopatra, Eka Tughlaq, Bishkaal, Shesh Rakshya, Aleekbabu, Athhoi, and Mahabharat 2. He has also acted in all the plays directed by him, as well as in many plays produced by other popular groups of Kolkata. He has been an actor-trainer imparting theatre training to the youth.

The Playwright
Shib Mukhopadhyay has written more than sixty plays. He has adapted the plays of Tennessee Williams, Bertolt Brecht, Jean Paul Sartre, Anton Chekhov and William Shakespeare. The first part of Mahabharata written by him ended with the Pandavas going to exile. This presentation is a sequel to the same.

The Group
Natadha was established in 1974, and besides performances and training, the group conducts social activities, festivals and publications on theatre. Natadha runs a regular theatre centre at Howrah, West Bengal. It publishes Natyamukhapatra, the only Bengali theatre newspaper which has been published every Thursday for 23 years. The group has staged Raktakarabi for almost forty years.

Cast & Credits
Gandhari Sadhana Mukhopadhyay
Dhritarashtra Koushik Chattopadhyay
Uttora Upabela Pal
Arjuna Arpan Ghoshal
Abhimanyu Rishav Basu
Draupadi Sohini Sarkar
Draupadi’s attendant Anurupa Sen
Nakula Milan Kundu
Sahadeva Sarthak Ash
Bheema Sumit Panja
Yudhishthhira Joydev Ghosh
Kunti Saptadwipa Chattopadhyay
Krishna Rudrarup Mukhopadhyay
Dushshasana Sourav Samanta
Duryodhana Arna Mukhopadhyay
Bidura Subir Goswami
Shakuni Ritam Sarkar
Bheeshma Saumen Bandopadhyay
Drona Susanta Chakraborty
Bhanumoti Swagata Rit
The father Subrata Chattopadhyay
Ambassador of Virata Tufan Singharoy
Sanjaya Sayam Das
Karna Anujoy Chattopadhyay
Bohitra (Attendant to Dhritarashtra) Saheb Dutta
Budhhika (Attendant to Gandhari) Tanuja Dey
Young Duryodhana Tathagata Pal
The Warrior Arup Chakraborty
The People Madhuparna Hatua, Shrabanti Saha, Shrutakirti Rooj, Anupurba Goswami, Amit Das, Pushpendu Sardar, Souvik Mohanta, Sourodeep Mukherjee.

Set Milan Kundu
Assisted by Sarthak Ash
Set Making Subol Maiti
Lights Jayanta Ghosh (Kalyan)
Music operation Bandan Misra
Costume making Bimal Maiti
Paintings Susanta Chakraborty
Make-up Joydev Ghosh
Dance Movements Sumit Panja
Publicity material Sourav Samanta
Teaser Saikat Chattaraj
Logo Design Subrata Chattopadhyay
Production control Sadhana Mukhopadhyay

Playwright Shib Mukhopadhyay
Music & Direction Arna Mukhopadhyay

Director, Natadha
7/2 Nabakumar Nandi Lane,
Howrah, West Bengal- 711101
M: +91 8240280700, 9674943774
E: natadha74@gmail.com

Girish Karnad’s Play: Ghoramukho Pala


Playwright: Girish Karnad
Director: Sanjib Ray
Group: Kathakriti, Kolkata
Language: Bengali
Duration: 2 hrs 20 mins

The Play
Kapil and Devdutta of Dharmapur are the heroes of our play. One comes from a Brahmin family and the other is a blacksmith’s son. Devdutta falls in love with the daughter of a gold-merchant, Padmini. He vows that if he marries Padmini, he would sacrifice his hands to Ma Kali, and his head to Rudra Dev. Eventually, Devdutta marries Padmini. They visit Ujjayini when Padmini is pregnant. Devdutta becomes furious when he discovers the intimacy between Kapil and Padmini. Sending Kapil and Padmini to the Rudra temple, he goes to the Kali temple and cuts his head off near the feet of Ma Kali. When Kapil returns, he sacrifices his life seeing his friend lying beheaded. Padmini too moves to do the same but Goddess Kali appears and stops her. Abiding by the direction of the goddess, she fixes the heads of Kapil and Devdutta, but on each other’s body. Although the two friends are offered life again by the grace of Ma, their heads are transposed…

Director’s Note
In 1972, Girish Karnad himself translated his play Hayavadana from Kannada into English in the eminent Theatre Journal Enact. The director of the Bengali theatre troupe Nakshatra, Shri Shyamal Ghosh requested the poet and litterateur Shri Shankha Ghosh to translate the play into Bengali at the earliest as the group was determined to stage it as their next production. Unfortunately, it was never performed by the group. Shyamal Ghosh before his demise entrusted Kathakriti to perform this play and it was revised by poet Shankha Ghosh. The present project is thus a modest endeavour of Kathakriti to accomplish the unfulfilled dream of Late Shyamal Ghosh, their preceptor.

The Director
Sanjib Ray, a retired Senior Manager in Allahabad Bank, has directed 9 one-act and 19 full-length plays for Kathakriti. He joined Nakshatra in 1967 and worked with legends like Shyamal Ghosh, Mohit Chattopadhyay, Mamata Chattopadhyay and Navendu Sen; and later worked under the direction of Jnanesh Mukherjee and Sohag Sen. Sanjib joined the drama section of Yuvavani under Akashvani as a news reader, actor, producer and reciter in 1969. He actively participated in audio plays by Akashvani commercial broadcasting. In 1989, he formed his own group Kathakriti and has remained its President-Director. He has also been the chief editor of Kathakriti Natyapatra since its inception. He was awarded the Dishari Purashkar as Best Director twice and the Ritwick Ghatak Memorial Award also as Best Director.
Recently a book, narrating his tireless journey in theatre for the last 50 years, was published and unveiled by eminent actress Smt. Maya Ghosh. At the book launch a number of eminent personalities spoke on his excellence and benevolence.

The Playwright
Girish Karnad (May 19, 1938 – June 10, 2019) was an Indian playwright, author, actor, and film director whose movies and plays, written largely in Kannada, explore the present by way of the past.

The Group
Kathakriti has staged 9 short plays and 19 full-length plays till date under the direction of Shri Sanjib Ray. Kathakriti has also initiated audio plays, workshops and seminars on theatre, in different schools and colleges. It has also performed during the Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan under the Central Ministry. Since its inception, Kathakriti holds a drama festival every year on the occasion of its birthday. The publication Kathakriti Natyapatra is also an asset for drama enthusiasts.

Cast & Credits
On Stage                                        Sanjib Ray, Ashok Ganguly, Nabanita Mukherjee Das, Shambhu                                                               Nath Shaw, Dipankar Haider, Bindia Ghosh, Kinjal Nanda, Parijat Das

Dance & Chorus                             Jayanta Ghosh, Shraddha Chanda, Poulami Bag,
Barnamala Chatterjee, Sayani Roy, Chowdhury Laboni Sarkar,
Mithun Gupta
Singers & Accompanists                Shubhadeep Guha, Sushruta Goswami, Pritam Ghosh, Shubhajit                                                               Dev, Susmita Sarma, Jayanta Saha

Set                                                 Chanchal Haider
Light & Accompanists                    Dipankar Dey, Ashim Das, Arup Das
Make-up                                         Biswajit Haldar
Backstage Management                Sourav Chatterjee, Bapi Sarkar, Arup Kumar Deb
Team Leader                                   Debasish Naskar

Playwright                                      Girish Karnad
Director                                          Sanjib Ray

Director, Kathakriti
TG 2/10, Teghoria
Kolkata- 700157
Ph: (033) 24260404
M: +91 9836444886
E: tgkathakriti@gmail.com