Pawan Uttam, Director Of Children’s Play Kallu Kallan Kaliya, Walks Us Through His Unique Offering

Pawan Uttam, Director Of Children’s Play Kallu Kallan Kaliya, Walks Us Through His Unique Offering

What caught my attention about the children’s play premiering at Prithvi Theatre, Mumbai on May 29, was its logo

Alpana ChowdhuryUpdated: Sunday, May 26, 2024, 02:27 PM IST
article-image

What caught my attention about the children’s play premiering at Prithvi Theatre, Mumbai on May 29, was its logo. The Pawan Uttam-directed play, Kallu Kallan Kaliya’s tagline says Kauwon ki kahani: Unhi ki zubaani. Here is a writer-director who has crows as the protagonists of his play, narrating their own stories. Immediately reminded of the late cartoonist R. K. Laxman, who was known to be fascinated by crows whom he often sketched and considered to be very intelligent creatures, we spoke to Pawan Uttam while he was in the throes of giving the finishing touches to his play about creatures we normally don’t give a second glance.

Together, the creative team of Kallu Kallan Kaliya, with Uttam at the helm, promises a spectacle of a play, that children will find fascinating.

Excerpts from the interview:

What made you write this story of a crow’s journey of self-discovery? Any particular incident that triggered the idea of this story?

Ten years ago, at a friend’s house, a crow came to her window. Her father told me that this crow was his mother and, so, he fed her every day. This made me think about re-incarnation and the relationship between crows and human beings. I started observing them and other creatures carefully. That is how the seed of this play germinated.

Our traditions often revolve around the relationship of human beings with Nature but slowly we are forgetting these traditions. Through this play I want to make our young generation aware of the delicate relationship we have with Nature at large.

Who are the characters in this play?

There are crows, Siberian birds and humans too—altogether 36 characters. The lead role is of the crow, Kallu, which will be played by a girl, Mansi Sehgal. Through the curious Kallu who flies far away from his home, looking for answers to questions he has about the ecological system, I want to enlighten young viewers about the same.

The subject is quite a serious one. How did you make it suitable for children and make it entertaining for them?

As an actor and producer, I have been associated with five children’s plays. I have also written Jungle Book 2, which is well-loved and is still being performed. Nonetheless, this subject was a challenging one. To make it entertaining for children in the age group above seven years, I made the scenes short and quirky with a lot of colourful characters. The play is a musical so I hope the young audience will enjoy its foot-tapping music.

What was your brief to your music director?

I, myself, sing, play the guitar, write lyrics and compose music. So though Rohit Das is the music composer we worked together on the music. The music is western, with a lot of rap and hip-hop to make it engrossing and entertaining for the children. My brief to Rohit was to design sound that is contemporary and has young vibes.

How did you make the locations look convincing so that your young viewers get transported to places where Kallu flies?

Our play starts in Uttar Pradesh, moves to Madhya Pradesh and finally Mumbai, so I asked Vivek Jadhav, who designed the sets, to impart the flavour of these locations.

In a play of this kind, costumes play a vital role. What was your brief to your costume designer?

Since crows are the predominant characters in the play, we could not have too many colours but we did try to break the monotony of black and grey. Pavitra Sarkar who has a lot of experience with children’s plays, has designed the costumes and I think she has done a marvellous job. The comfort level of the actors had to be kept in mind as well to allow them flexibility of movements.

RECENT STORIES

Unlock Your Future: Ancient Secrets Of Face Reading Revealed

Unlock Your Future: Ancient Secrets Of Face Reading Revealed

Here's What Hexagram 39 Reveals: Obstruction Leads To Intelligent Decisions

Here's What Hexagram 39 Reveals: Obstruction Leads To Intelligent Decisions

Sun’s Position On June 21: Discover How The Summer Solstice Affects You

Sun’s Position On June 21: Discover How The Summer Solstice Affects You

Bengaluru This Weekend: From Salsa Dances To Beer Tastings, Interesting List Of Events For You To...

Bengaluru This Weekend: From Salsa Dances To Beer Tastings, Interesting List Of Events For You To...

7 Benefits Of Drinking Black Tea During Monsoon

7 Benefits Of Drinking Black Tea During Monsoon