Multiple awarded plays on last 3 days

Matte Eklavya. The play in Kannada English and Hindi won for the Oriya director Satyabrata Raut, the best director award and for his actors Dbingri Naresh who played Elklavya the best actor award and for Yashwant and Chidambaram Poojari best supporting actor male awards. In the play, Eklavya defies the diktat of Drona to give him his right thumb as guru dakshina for making a statue of him and thereby accepting him as his defacto guru. He says rightly that if he is as great as the Pandava prince Arjun in the art of shooting arrows he has achieved it by his own rigorous practice. In a challenging tone, he declares that all men are equal irrespective of caste and creed and birth
Ganesha played by Poojari is the object of ridicule as he ceases to be a people’s God or Ganadevta and is only a deity for the mainstream Hinduism. Ganesha. is haunted by Eklavya and tries to persuade Vyasa, the writer of the Mahabharata, to rewrite the story of Eklavya in the future where all men will be equal without the burden of caste and religion. Raut directs with élan using his considerable knowledge of Chhau dance to give movements to the players. He also uses elements of Yakshagana in the play
The play So Many Socks staged by Q.T. theatre Productions in Quasar Thakore Padamse’s direction was a delicate piece of theatre that explores the unsaid in the story of three generations of a Tibetan family living in Delhi and a camp in the hills where the family has settled down, they come to India wearing all their clothes and several socks, hence the title of the play. It all began a year ago when the group wanted to work on Tenzin Tsuendue’s book of poems Kora and to use movement based performers to try and communicate the unsaid. The text was created by Annie Zaidi on the same premise.
The exploration is not of external changes in the tumultuous lives of the refugees but on the inner changes in their hearts and minds. The mother is accidentally shot in the head during a peaceful demonstrations of their plight and their demands for a free Tibet. The grandson is very attached to his grandma and is quite distraught at the shooting. His mother, played by Bhavna Pani, who received the best supporting actor in a female role award, is a young woman who does not understand her mother’s constant refusal to speak to her in their own language which she does with her grandson.
Designed in the round with the audience seated on all sides the play was marked by some excellent movements designed by Amey Mehta. The music by Suhas Ahuja who was also acting and singing and playing the tabla on stage provided an edge to the script. The direction by Quasar Thakore Padamsee was sensitive and lyrical.
The Marathi play Shillak was a sort of family drama where the father is under stress to prove himself a proper bread earner for the family. He undergoes immense torture both at home and in the office to prove himself. The family is quite contented with what is happening until the man breaks down one day and kills his employer in his imagination with the entire watching him.
Savitri Dancing in the Forest of Death was performed as a a solo show by Preeti Vasudevan, a Bharatnatyam dancer. Preeti has a wonderfully supple body that she can do anything with. The initial part of the show where one can only see her feet in play was tour de force of sustained ability to hold herself in any position. It was an interesting show. there was plenty of talking. Dialogues were cast in the absurd theatre mould with little or no connection between the performance and the words uttered. The show was directed by J.Ed. Araiza and produced by Thresh a company owned by the dancer. The awards at the Meta were given away at a glittering ceremony on the day after the festival’s last day.
The play Gasha received three awards the for best play at the festival and for the best ensemble and an award for the best original script for Irawati Karnik.
The play After The Silence got four awards: Best actor in a female role for the talented Chilean actor Valeria Olguin, and for the best innovative sound design to her compatriot Claudio Claviija, Best choreography went to the director and actor Martin John C and the best lighting to Shahji Surendranath. The award for the best stage design went to Samkutty Pattimkari for The Old Man and the Sea.

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