World Theatre Day: Five-day theatre festival begins with ‘Mulaqaat’

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STATE TIMEs NEWS

JAMMU: Five-day theatre festival to commemorate World Theatre day celebrations commenced here on Saturday at Natrang Studio Theatre with the staging of a play ‘Mulaqaat’ based on Vaclav Havel’s ‘Audience’ which was adapted in Hindi by Naveen Pant and Dr. Sharada Yadav.
The play was directed by Mohd. Yaseen who has an experience of many years in acting and allied theatre works.
Yaseen is also a National fellowship and Scholarship holder from Ministry of Culture, Govt. of India.
The play was appreciated by the audience for its content, acting and treatment.
The play revolves around a meeting between a brewery manager and an employee ‘Vanek’.
While the manager is clearly opening too many beers and inducing binge drinking, it is less clear what he wants from Vanek.
‘Audience’ was the first of Vaclav Havel’s partly autobiographical one-act plays known as the “Vanek Trilogy” based on his experience of being subject to forced work while under constant harassment from the then system.
The character of ‘Vanek’ was closest to Havel himself, it tells of a dissident writer who is forced to work in a brewery, so that he can contribute to society rather than be an intellectual bourgeois burden.
In a friendly talk, or possibly an interrogation, it was clear that the brewery manager desperately wants something, but it was not at all clear what that something is.
The play ‘Mulaqaat’ in a dramatic way, depicts a rendezvous of two different identities with different background and social status which yields a conversation which is nonfigurative yet concrete in certain manner. At the end of the play, which carried many symbolic and partially direct references to the oppression of that time, the brewery manager was so drunk that he even forgets that they ever have had a meeting and he greets and treats ‘Vanek’ as if he has just arrived.
Brijesh Avtar Sharma as ‘Foreman’ and Sushant Singh Charak as ‘Vanek’ were at their best in portraying the characters assigned to them and presented the long, text-based play with the requisite versatility.
The lights were designed and operated by Neeraj Kant and the Music was rendered by Sagar Gupta.
Tomorrow on the second day of Natrang Theatre Festival, ‘Jangiram Ki Haveli’ will be featured under the direction of Neeraj Kant at 5pm.