Times of India | Strategic thinking is crucial to Bengaluru

From climbing the ladder and fixing a bulb on stage to spreading the word through quirky posts on social media, a slew of things go in ahead of putting up a play on stage. Alongside a compelling storyline and a set of good actors, there is also the need for a support system to manage the entire process of production as well as suitable infrastructure that serves as access points of the arts for the audience. While the urge to critically replicate the society in plays is more now than ever before, takers for avant-garde experimental works are also increasing in number. Thus, strategic thinking is crucial to theatre management. This World Theatre Day,Bangalore Times speaks to collectives and practitioners in the city to better understand the challenges they face while pushing the creative boundaries. Excerpts:
‘The arts still lack visibility’

“There is still a dearth of discourse on the arts, when compared with that on politics or sports. We need to look beyond the listings section in newspapers and elaborately discuss the arts and their potential to impact the society positively. And that is possible only when an effort is made to understand a particular art form or performance with an insight,” says Nimi Ravindran, who manages Sandbox Collective, adding, “Bengaluru’s theatre groups are quite democratic. While the bottlenecks remain in terms of infrastructure and funding, the city’s theatre community, as a whole, is quite close knit, helpful and generous towards each other.” It’s also interesting to note that most administrative and management responsibilities in theatre are being ably handled by women across the country.

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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.