New Delhi, 18th February, 2017: Theatre practitioners, enthusiasts and litterateurs from across the world converge in Delhi to participate in 19th Bharat Rang Mahotsav’s 3 day World Theatre Forum. The topic of this year’s forum was ‘Whose Theatre is it anyway?’ Mr. Arno Boehler (Philosopher, University of Vienna) and Ms. Susanne Granzer (Professor, University of Music and Performing Arts, Vienna) were the speakers in the first session. They addressed the audience on THE PHILOSOPHICAL VIEWPOINT which Prof. Waman Kendre, Director, N.S.D. opened and said, “There are some directors, actors, designers and other technicians who claim the theatre to be theirs. They believe themselves to be the only one to visualise, conceptualise and design the whole process. However, another argument comes from the audience that if they don’t come to see then whose theatre is it? Mr. Arno Boehler said, “With the help of stage philosophy we try to bring sensuality back that has been lost in Academic Philosophy. It is theexchange of ideas, and it is done by exchanging ideas.” Ms Susanne Granzer said, “Art opens up the field which has never been opened up inacademies so far and in India we can learn a lot about Philosophy.”


In the Second session of World Theatre Forum which was on THE ACTOR’S THEATRE, Hilmir Jensson (Head, Movement, The Icelandic Academy of Arts) said, “Every participant has the equal ownership and equal artistic responsibility. There is no hierarchy in set up of theatre, so there is no one but ourselves to blame for any mistake that happens. It gives freedom to the actor and challenges them at the same time. We have successfully produced plays in this format; therefore I can say that it is the actor’s theatre in a true sense.” Abdul Latif Khatana (Associate Professor Actiing, National Schoool of Drama) said, “I feel that there is no black and white. It is a process and we should let the director direct; and the actor act; and give the ownership of the project to creativity. Keeping this in mind we should keep the fundamental elements of theatre like the designer, writer, etc. involved in every step of the process so that the finished product is highlighted not just as one element.” Mr. Eirikur Smári Sigurðarson (Director, Research, Department of Humanities, University of Iceland) chaired the session.


During the Meet the Director – face to face, Surendra Sharma, Director of Maila Aanchal was asked about his approach from text to performance and he responded, “I was not even born in 1954 when the novel, this play is based on, was written. As a nation, in that era, we were like teenagers. We didn’t have much experience in terms of free political society and I think I’ve been through the same as a person. We tried to raise a question in this play on our forgotten history, which we are so proud of.” Arun Lal, Director of Chillara Samaram responded the question about the process of training of his actors, “The whole play is based on improvisational satire which was really challenging because we mixed some folk-art forms and adapted them in the play. However, our actors are very talented and are trained since childhood.” Rajan Khatiwada, Director of Sunkeshari explained the theatre culture in Nepal saying “Theatre in Nepal is picking up at a slow pace. Many youngsters of both genders are showing interest and are coming up with many different ideas. For this play, I tried to take out elements of our diverse culture and mix it with modernism which in a way gives you a peek in to our modern Nepali society.”


Today during the National School of Drama’s 19th International Drama Festival Bharat Rang Mahotsav 2017, 4 Plays were performed includingOasis Sougaijam’s Hoijang Taret in Manipuri, Prabuddha Pandey’s Roopmati (Turra Kallangi) in Rajasthani, D.P. Sinha’s Rakt Abhishek in Hindiand Praveen Kumara Nojelu Ananda’s Infinite in Hindi and English.

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