World Theatre Day: The Unforgettable Bequest Of Regional Theatre In India

World Theatre Day: The Unforgettable Bequest Of Regional Theatre In India

On World Theatre Day, it's crucial to look back in time to catch the flames of the profound art of theatre in the regional troposphere, because they breathe on the sidelines of mainstream glamour. Here are the 4 threads of regional drama traditions that nobody should miss

Mariyam UsmaniUpdated: Wednesday, March 27, 2024, 05:34 PM IST
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Here are the 3 traditional threads of drama that nobody should miss | Canva

The memoir of theatre in India starts with Rigveda. The milestone creative chronicles of Kalidasa, (Shakuntala, Malavikagnimtra and others) have been traced as epic Indian plays. In ancient India, 'Natyashastra' was an established and cherished form of dramatic art. This patrimony flourished under an Islamic and multicultural canopy; however, modern theatre reached its pinnacle during the British era, spanning between the 19th and 20th centuries.

The culture of drama captured a lot of hype during the freedom movement and after the flag of independence fluttered over sovereign India. On World Theatre Day, it's crucial to look back in time to catch the flames of the profound art of theatre in the regional troposphere, because they breathe on the sidelines of mainstream glamour. Here are the 4 threads of regional drama traditions that nobody should miss.

Bengali Theatre: The Glittering Roots Of Drama

The first modern Indian theatre began during colonial rule in Kolkata, where the Bangla-language artisans rocked the stage with luminous tales to decipher the imaginary and realistic ghettos. Buro Shalikher Ro (by Michael Madhusudan Dutta) is considered to be one of the earliest plays with a sarcastic tone against the 'zamindari' system, while Girish Chandra Ghosha founded the first Bengali theatre company in 1872. With iconic dramas' like 'Chitra', 'Daakghar', and 'Teen Kanya', Thakurji Rabindra Nath Tagore still supersedes the allure of authentic Bengali plays through magnetic charm.

The endowment of this iconic regional theatre is also known for contributing to the freedom movement by inciting the spirit of freedom, nationalism and unity. The heirloom has shaped various bright stars like Utpal Dutt, Bijon Bhattacharya, Sisir Bhaduri and so on.

Parsi Theatre: Mishmash Of Linguistic And Romantic Epitome

On the other hand, Parsi Theatre has played a dominant role in nurturing the destiny of Indian drama with its Gujarati roots and focus on 'Urdu' zaban. The journey of Parsi theatre began in the 1850s with the rise of the Mumbai-based group 'Shakespeare', while the first drama company was introduced in 1853.

Parsi theatre is known for fortifying the Hindustani language crux and blending the Gujarati, Marathi, Urdu and Bollywood essences to serve the best melodrama and artistic upsurge. From Shakespearean plays to romance-drenched folklore, the ring of the Parsi theatre is quite extensive. Artists like Prithviraj Kapoor and Ardeshir Irani have beefed up the heritage with their exquisite talents.

Kashmiri Theatre: The Microcosm Of Sufism

We often measure the gravity of art through the amount of drift in mainstream glamour, but regional drama safeguards its aurora by maintaining a distance from chaotic noises. The Kashmiri theatre plays an unforgettable role in annexing the folk tales around Jhelum, Chinar and the flourishing 'Vadi'. The 'Bhand-Pather' from Kashmir presents spirituality and yarns of mystic Sufi ripples to weave the web of touchy stories.

Marathi Theatre: The Annotations Of Social Change, On The Periphery Of Bollywood

Marathi theatre is known for its dominant role in presenting the message of social change. Along with the annotations of pre-independence struggles, the Marathi theatre upturn has been highlighted during the 1960s and afterwards. From Bashir Momin Kavathekar to Vijay Tendulkar and P.L. Deshpande, the historic, satire-based and lyrical performances have proved the authenticity of 'Tamasha' and 'Dashavatar' in the pointy Marathi dialect. Later, the ideas of mutiny, equality and inclusivity joined in to strengthen the flabbergasting footnotes of authentic Marathi drama.

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