DRAMA AND PERFORMANCE have always been perceived as two vital tools of communication. But can that be achieved in the matter of 10 minutes? Vriksh, a New Delhi-based theatre group believes so. Vriksh is organising the country’s first ever micro-drama festival in the capital. Titled Thespis, the festival, which is scheduled to be held at the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts today, will present a series of 10-minute plays.
The festival is named after Thespis of Icaria, who lived in 6th century BC and was the first actor to perform solo. The plays are conceptualised in 10 different languages, including Kashmiri, Rajasthani, Urdu, Punjabi, Oriya, Tamil, Malayalam, Hindi and English.
The themes of the plays are quite unique. Black, a Malayalam drama by M Shaji, for instance, depicts the tensions and frustrations of a father with a teenage daughter. Floating leaves of Chinaar, directed by Anju Mattoo, on the other hand, describes the agony and suffering of Kashmiri pandits settled in Delhi.
Another interesting inclusion is Kleptomania, which is based on Satyajit Ray’s story Barin’s Ailment. Directed by Rajesh Bali, Kleptomania depicts the unusual coincidences and phases of life through which people tend to find their real self.
Another notable tale is Oru Nimisham, directed by Sivadas Menon, which shows the lifestyle of modern couples, who give more importance to their professional lives instead of devoting some much-needed time to their families.
The festival, which is open to all, will be inaugurated by Waman Kendre, director, National School of Drama. The event will also be marked by the launch of a book, which will consist of the synopsis and other details of all the 25 plays to be staged.
Thespis will also showcase three plays by children from NGOs such as Saksham (Mohmaya), Deepalaya (Let’s Begin) and TK Soman’s group (Khud Mein Hai Vishwas). Some selected plays, directors and actors will also be awarded at Thespis.