Deccan Herald | Interesting acts on stage

Interesting acts on stage

Reflecting reality

A scene from 'At The Zoo'.

Theatre artistes Roy Sinai, Vandana Prabhu and Swetanshu Bora will present director Arundhati Raja’s production, ‘At Home At The Zoo’, across the City as part of The Deccan Herald Theatre Festival. 

Originally written by Edward Albee in 1958, it was first rejected by producers in New York. The play premiered in West Berlin in 1959 and subsequently in an off-Broadway production in 1960. Since then, it has been a perennial favourite with theater companies and has been performed throughout the world. 

The plot reflects life. These reflections are distorted and the plot questions the very idea of happiness. 

The first act, ‘Homelife’ talks about the character Peter, who has a comfortable job as an editor in a publishing house. 

He and his wife Ann have a good marriage and the duo are happy until Ann walks away. In the second act, ‘ The Zoo’, Peter decides to go to the park to regain some comfort and meets Jerry, who is full of stories and looking for someone to talk to. The plot revolves around Peter’s life which is turned upside down after his marriage. 

Members of ‘Gnatak’ will perform ‘The Leader/ Krapp’s Last Tape’ on February 27, 7.30 pm, at Chowdiah Memorial Hall. Both plays are directed by Michael Joseph. ‘The Leader’ is originally written by Eugene Ionesco and ‘Krapp’s Last Tape’ is written by Samuel Beckett. 
‘The Leader’ is a satire on mass adulation of political leaders. The play revolves around the group of people who are waiting for their leader. The announcer leads the celebration. He awaits the leader and calls out his mundane actions through the use of character typage. The play highlights absurdist and existential teams of non-personalisation and loss of identity. 

‘Krapp’s Last Tape’ is about a man called Krapp, who on his 69th birthday, reviews the year gone by recording his reflection on an old spool tape. Unable to bear the present reality, he submerges himself in the past. Through this play, Beckett paints a portrait of impotent desire by capturing the futility of Krapp. It revolves around the juxtaposition between technology and human emotions and how absurd life actually becomes. 

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Jagriti is a Performance Arts space dedicated to Theatre, Music, Dance and Comedy. Founded in 2011 by Arundhati and Jagdish Raja, the space has hosted several productions from India and around the world. A 200-seat theatre, built around a full-thrust stage, it is fully equipped to cater to both artistes and audience. The main stage is designed for intimate performances, with adjoining spaces for informal lectures and gatherings, and an attached restaurant- 'The Fat Chef'. Jagriti is owned and operated by the not-for-profit ART Foundation, a registered charitable trust.

The Rooftop - above the main auditorium is an open-to-sky space with a staging area that can accommodate about 50 people. A raised and walled off platform can work as a perfect area for puppet theatre. The Rooftop has a restroom and a pantry. 

The Terrace - alongside the auditorium, the Terrace can accommodate about 20 people as an informal gathering area.

Lumbini - extending out from the foyer, Lumbini has a stage and an open-to-sky terraced space for about 80 people.