Bhopal: MP Drama school holds auditions, 19 budding artistes try their luck

BHOPAL: The practical as well theoretical knowledge of theatre of the applicants was tested on Thursday - the first day of four-day preliminary selections for admission to the MP School of Drama at Hotel Lakeview here. They were asked about the plays they have seen, the names of their writers and directors etc. They were also asked to sing, dance, act and improvise.

Though around 33 candidates from Madhya Pradesh were scheduled to appear in auditions on the first day, only 19 turned up.

The applicants came from Chhattarpur, Balaghat, Chhindwara, Jabalpur, Sagar and Raisen, among other places. Candidates from other states would appear in the audition in subsequent days.

Saurabh Yadav from Jabalpur, when asked to showcase his performance, delivered a dialogue from ‘Phate Chithe Kapde’, the Hindi adaptation of a Marathi play. He also performed Rai dance and sang a folk song. He was also asked to enact the role of a man who is being chased by a witch in a forest.

Yadav told Free Press that these auditions were to be held in May. However, they were delayed owing to the Covid-19 pandemic. He said that this was his first attempt.

Harshvardhan Singh from Sagar is a member of an amateur theatre group Rang Prayog for the past four years. He enacted a scene from the Hindi adaptation of Jean Paul Sartre’s play ‘The Respectful Prostitute’. He was also asked to perform a folk song and folk dance of his area. He performed some steps of a folk dance called Dhimrai. He was asked the names of the plays he had seen and who were their writers and directors.

Singh was satisfied with his performance. This is his second attempt, he said. In his last attempt, he had made it to the final round but was not admitted.

A five-member panel of artistes including Lata Singh Munshi (Bhopal), Nalini Joshi (New Delhi), Vasant Kashikar (Jabalpur), Yogendra Chaubey (Raipur) and director of the School, Alok Chatterjee judged the performance of the applicants. The process would continue for four days till Sunday. The candidates short-listed in the preliminary round would appear in a four-day workshop to be held from November 4-7 at Ravindra Bhavan. Finally, 26 candidates would be selected for admission to the school.

Experts' veiws:

"These youngsters have lots of enthusiasm but they do not want to work hard. Many have come here without making any preparations. But there is no use blaming them. After all, they could have learned only what was available at their places from where they come."-Vasant Kashikar, theatre director

"There is an element of glamour in the field of theatre. The youngsters get drawn to the glamour but they don’t know what kind of hard work you have to put here. I find that as far as hard work is concerned, the youth from rural backgrounds are better than those from cities and towns."-Yogendra Chaubey, theatre director

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