NIFT 2020 concludes with experimental play ‘Kirtan’

A scene from the play Kirtan, staged by Brown Thespian, Chandigarh, at Abhinav Theatre on Thursday. —Excelsior/Rakesh
A scene from the play Kirtan, staged by Brown Thespian, Chandigarh, at Abhinav Theatre on Thursday. —Excelsior/Rakesh

Lalit Gupta

JAMMU, Feb 13: NIFT 2020, the thirteen-play international theater festival sponsored by Nutan Prayas Manch, in association with Lakhshya the Aim, concluded with the play ‘Kirtan’, staged by Brown Thespian, Chandigarh, at the Abhinav Theatre, here today.
Written and directed by young Ambika Kamal, a theatre graduate from Punjab University, the play’s story set in rural Bengal, revolves around the trio of ‘Tamasha’ artistes; Kantu, his wife and friend Barmu.
The story takes a turn when Kantu disappears one night after he has a fight with owner for not paying his share. The women’s life suddenly changes after her husbands’ disappearance.
Staged without any set, with props of two bicycles, actors dressed in black using two sheets of red and white colors, the minimal play was devised as a piece in which the actor’s body was made the mode of communication.
The actors energized the stage with measured dance movements and groupings. Right from the opening sequence, where Ambika Kamal as the wife, unfold herself from the non-descript black mass, along with sounds, background score and the spot lights-a kind of ethereal feel seemed to pervade on stage.
The play’s pace was marked by circularity of movements and emotions which oscillated between ups and downs; fast to slow, agitation to repose. The sequences wherein actors circle the stage on bicycles and then put them upside down with their wheels moving created a symphony between movements of the inanimate-bicycle and the animate-actors.
The poetic use of black and few colors with intelligent use of spots and side lights created a poetic ambiance. The admirable display of mime by actors was another highlight of today’s experimental production. Other members of the cast were Pradeep Singh Cheema and Madhusudhan.