Plight of war, corruption in the society, and lynching in the name of religion will be some of the burning topics explored in an upcoming theatre festival starting August 23.
The 3rd edition of Sanhita Manch, organised by Mumbai-based theatre group Being Association, will kick off from PL Deshpande auditorium, Dadar, Mumbai.
While the three Hindi plays, to be showcased in the festival, were selected by a panel of judges from the world of theatre and films including Ranjit Kapoor, Ratna Pathak Shah and Atul Tiwari; the only Marathi play was shortlised by a team including Marathi playwright and theatre critic Satish Alekar, Jayant Pawar and Irawati Karnik.
The event will open with "Radhey", a play inspired by Hindi poet Ramdhari Singh Dinkar's timeless classic "Rashmirathi", produced by the group headed by theatre-film actors Rasika Agashe and Zeeshan Ayyub.
It is set on Karna's last two days of life during the Mahabharata war. It will also explore the impact of war on people from different sections of society, their take on war, their desires, dreams, anger and changing relationships with each other during the war.
The group, founded by theatre director Rasika Agashe and her husband actor Zeeshan Aayub, aims to revive original writing through the initiative.
"Theatre is a therapeutic process and it helps in personality development. but to be honest it's an opportunity to meet old, new friends in a common space, exploring new content, reading new plays, making, remaking and fighting and discussing and relearning, for me.
"So, we are here with the 3rd edition of Sanhita manch...let's relive," Ayyub said.
While Flying Fathers Art Association's "Kabab", directed by Rajesh Singh, will see a single mother struggle to raise a child under the weight of greed and corruption, Vihaan Drama Works' "Romeo Juliet in Smart Cities of Contemporary India" will witness a young couple standing against the world for their love.
A Marathi play "Adhyat Mi, Sadhyat Tu, Madhyat Ma Kuni Nahi" will also be staged by Maharashtra Culture Centre.
After concluding the shows in Mumbai on August 25, the group will travel to Pune from August 26-29, Bhopal from September 13-15, and finally to Delhi from October 4-6.
The plays are also compiled in a book, which will be released in the festival itself.
The festival will also see seminars and discussion on the craft of theatre by theare and film actors Rajendra Gupta, Himani Shivpuri, Ramu Ramanathan and playwright Vijay Kenkre.
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