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Tagore play leaves Agartala spellbound

P Das, Agartala (Apr 7): Agartalites were left spellbound by a scintillating performance of a young artist of the Bangladesh Manipuri theatre group that staged Tagore’s poetry play ‘Debotar Grash’ at the Nazrulkala Sethra.

The show was a part of the joint celebration by India & Bangladesh to showcase the works of Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore on his 150th birth anniversary.

The story, based on a simple theme, incorporated a message that humanity is a sublime virtue.

The tale depicts the epic voyage of a group of people in which a widowed mother and her son were returning home after attending a ritualistic festival but faced a tempest.

Among the travellers was a priest who was caught in a dilemma. He tried to divine if the cause of the tempest was a result of his failure to keep his word to God.

The priest, in order to appease the gods, threw the child into the waters but realising his mistake jumped in the churning waters to save the child, but his efforts went in vain.

The performance was very rhythmic and the experimental use music on Tagore’s music rendered in Manipuri mesmerized the gathering on Friday.

Directed by Subhasis Sinha, the staged drama in Bishnupriya Manipuri language kept theme of the story originally written in Bengali unchanged.

Though Manipuri is not a very popular language here and very few people among the audience knows it or could comprehend the dialogues; the incorportation of musical elements helped the audience in understanding the theme of the story. The actors dressed in traditional manipuri attire used various elements of dance, culture to narrate Tagore’s original creations. It was the 15th show of the ‘Debotar Grash’ and lead caster of the play included Jyoti Sinha (mother), Kumar Singha (brahmin) and Sunanda Sinha (rakhal). As a tribute to Rabindranath Tagore, artists of India and Bangladesh have begun jointly performing various cultural shows, including drama, on the themes penned by the bard.

Tripura chief secretary Dr Sanjay Kumar Panda inaugurated the two-day festival organized by the Birchandra Library in association with the Information and Cultural Affairs department of Tripura. “The programme is part of cultural diplomacy between India and Bangladesh which shares cultural and linguistic affinity and such programme shall bring closer the people of two nations as people to people contact enhanced through them,” said Panda. Manipuri Theatre of Bangladesh, formed 16 years ago, is also scheduled to stage “Debotar Grash” in Silchar in southern Assam while another Bangladeshi cultural organisation will perform programmes in Shillong and Agartala.

Courtesy: Seven Sisters' Post

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