From the 6th to the 9th of November we had the first theatre festival of the repertory at Parivartan. Before I tell you about the festival I will introduce you all to our repertory. Parivartan has a very strong interest in theatre not just as a mode of entertainment but we also see it as one of the key elements of connecting with the community. The repertory is not really huge it is a small group of 22 young theatre enthusiasts. These artists are all residents of nearby villages (8 to be exact). They are all in the age group of 16-24 a mixed bag of both boys and girls. The surprising thing here is that we have more girls than boys which are huge achievements. This I am saying clearly from a theatrical and social point of view that we have more girls interested in theatre in a state like Bihar and that too in a rural based repertory.
The year and a half old repertory has done quite a lot of work in the field of theatre and in the community as well. The repertory is not merely a group of actors that just makes and performs plays. Not to say that we don’t do that. We do perform many plays but we always have some sort of an ulterior motive of doing the plays. One of the biggest and the most important were connecting with the community through our plays. We perform proscenium as well as street plays as well. The proscenium shows we put up at our amphitheatre that we have where we get audiences of 700+.
In this festival there were 4 plays that we had put up for the audience. All four days we had the house full. This was really solid. People came and became a part of our festival regardless of the fact that it was really cold in the evening in the winter and sitting in an amphitheatre was difficult for them.
For me this was a great experience because not only was I acting in one of the plays but I was also the assistant director for the plays and was managing was in charge of the whole festival. So basically what I was doing was making sure that everything was happening smoothly from getting the technical aspects such as stage design light design and sound setting to getting the actors ready with everything their costumes their make-up props and everything.
The response of the audience was really overwhelming for us because we managed to gather large audiences for the whole festival without doing a lot of publicity and announcements for the festival. The word about our plays and our festival spread from person to person and from village to village by word of mouth which is great for the growth of the repertory. This festival was the first time the repertory had organized and we hope that as time passes and our repertory grows we will be able to host many more festivals and not just in our campus but also organized festivals in the community hoping to connect a lot more with the communities.