One of the features of this Natya Mela is that it publishes the viewer's comments for the benefit of the participating teams and all the theater lovers. Please keep an eye on this page.
|1||Tapas Mandal||Very nice performance.I am from Bangladesh.Enjoyed a lot.|
|2||Dileep Nandi||This is by far the most well executed program in the Bay Area. On time and well
organized. Thank you Sanskriti for bringing this event to us.
We enjoyed all the plays. Robibar was little weak. Other three plays were simply superb. PutulKhela engrossed us thoroughly. Bulu was fabulous. Timber Merchant in Sky View Lounge was a joy to watch. Ghare Baire is not an easy play to begin with when we all have the memories of great director's work on it. ActOn executed it nicely.It is at par with any professional performance.
|3||R Gupta||Great event. Good performances. putul Khela is the one we liked the most. That team went above and beyond in many respect - most importantly acting. The lady doing banker's wife had to destroy her self and get into Bulu. Same can be said of Raju das. Other two actors in the Sky View didn't have to go out of the way. Ghare baire delivered a convincing picture with nice sense of dresses and some good actings.|
During my recent CA trip, I came to know about the drama festival by Sanskriti. As a theater enthusiast, I didn't want to miss this opportunity to see some Bengali plays in the US. I am quite up to date with the group theater scene in Calcutta. Let me share my 2 cents :)
*Putul Khela:* Ibsen's Doll's House, an iconic play, has been performed in different languages, different forms over decades. In this particular version, the director got rid of some characters from the original play but still was able to create a captivating ambiance. The lead actress did a fair job but could have refrained from copying some histrionics of legendary Tripti Mitra. The recitation scene (Jhulan) could have been much better. In fact, that was a weak scene. The interaction between Bulu's friend and her ex-lover (a promising actor) was realistic. However, Bulu's husband needs to improve his voice modulation and pronunciation. Overall, a decent job by Saikat. Kudo's to the director for selecting such a challenging play. *Rating: 6/10*
I guess, other than the stage up ( which was brilliant ), there is not much to talk about here. The quality of acting (especially the female lead) was quite ordinary to say the least. However, the salesperson (or trader) was better compared to his co-actors. The storyline (penned by the director, I guess) had some gaping holes. A female reporter from a small town of Bengal had a Pakistani colleague/friend in 70's ! Hardly realistic or believable. In fact, it was not difficult to find a connection with a recent Bollywood film (not a good one) PK. Beaten to death cliches like "posto bora nostalgia" do no longer create any emotional stir. Predictable plot development, cliched dialogues, gimmicky lights, mediocre direction - as a whole, a below par production. *Rating: 2/10*
*Rabibar:* Rabibar has always been one of my favorite Tagore stories. The director must be lauded for selecting a period piece like Rabibar for a drama festival. I felt that the play was successful because of sharp dialogues, realistic acting, appropriate music and thoughtful direction. Voice over segments and audio-video clips were quite impressive as well. I particularly liked the natural chemistry between some key characters. I guess, the group may need to work on some logistic issues like scene transitions, back stage management, light planning etc but those can easily be improved. They got their basics right. To me, the overall performance was really commendable. I would like to get in touch with the group and its director to know more about their future projects. *Rating: 7/10*
*Ghore Baire*: Staging an iconic Tagore novel like Ghare Baire in a Drama Fest is quite difficult. Just for that decision itself, the director of Acton and the must be given some credit. However, the director should have been careful about some obvious flaws that were hardly expected . As we all know, Ghare Baire was set against the backdrop of "Banga Bhanga", Boycott, Swadeshi Movement during 1905-1911. The play starts with a scene where Nikhilesh is listening to "ami bonophool go" on "kol-er gaan". That was a Kanan Debi number from Shesh Uttor (1942). That was not the only discrepancy, btw. Apart from this one, there were a few other noticeable mistakes throughout the play including dress designs, projections etc. In spite of these loopholes, Nikhilesh (probably the director himself) single-handedly carried the play. Sandeep's character was not up to the mark mainly due to his week tonal quality and Bimala should have evoked more emotion. Overall, a good attempt by ActOn, I must say. *Rating: 5/10* Thanks to Sanskriti !
|5||Suranjan Ganguly||Dear Sanskirit committee,
Apnader bangla natyamela upobhog korlam. sobaike janai dhonyobad. Edeshe bose 4 ti bangla natak dekhte paowa soubhagyer byapar.Natok guli somporke du char kotha boli. Amar sobcheye bhalo laaglo Putul Khela o Rabibar. Kahini binyas, chortitro nirman, abhinoy, parichalona,sangeet, songlaap sob miliye ei duto natak er uposthapona besh sofol. Duti natok -i bikhyato kahinee bhittik. Sutroang ekta pratyasha to chhiloi. Ei dui natyogoshthee-r parichalok o abhineta o anyo kola kusholee der abhinondon janai. Ghore Baire natok ti ek subihyato uponyas bhittik. Tai sei udyog keo sadhubad janai. Eto baro o jotil uponyas ke monche anata sohoj chhilo na. Kichhu asongoti sattweo besh proshongsoneeyo prayas. Skyview lounge natok ti dekhe mone holo moncho sojjay jotota chinta,bhabna, somoy parichalok diyechehn, songlap, choritro nirman o parichalonay hoyto totota den ni. Tai abhinobo mancho parikolpona chhara aar bishesh kichhu paini. char ti r modhye ei natok ti temon bhabe mon bhorate pare ni.porer natymelar apekkhay roilaam.
|6||S. Maji||Let me take this opportunity to thank Sanskriti in doing the cultural programs and hosting the Durga Puja in Fremont. Its walking distance from my house, an added bonus.
Glad that I went to the Natyamela. It was well organized andthe teams did an excellent job. I have now subscribed to Sanskriti's mailinglist and hope to see more of their cultural programs.
Disclaimer - I didn't have any background information of anyof the plays, not even the story of Ghare Baire. So my review below is purelyfrom an entertainment/enjoyment perspective.
Putulkhela was an excellent performance. Riveting and wellversed. The female lead was superb. The male lead has a heavy voice and acouple of times when angry his voice was too loud - almost a distraction. Heshould try to moderate it.
Ghare Baire, although performance was excellent, I felt thestoryline didn't flow smoothly. Development of relationships and events weretoo fast. The adaptation needs a little work. Also, the zamindar looked to the sky/ceiling almost the entiretime.
He seemed to be a perceptive elite with his feet on the ground, why notthe sight?
Robibar was quite enjoyable too. I was impressed by the malelead. His portrayal of the nonchalant, careless rich man's son was natural. Hisold man though was a bit overdressed and over acted.
Sky View Lounge was a different genre. Modern setting with anotably optimistic ending (unlike the other plays). The story flowed quitenicely with the right dosage of mystery, humor and drama. Very entertaining.The elderly audience behind me kept
guessing the turn of events – they wereloud but I didn't mind……Although the acting was superb, the charactersthemselves could be jazzed up a bit. The engineer from LA was glum throughout -he is the only character in all 4 plays who got all he wanted and then somemore (sister Saleena !), but never smiled. If I got such a readymade sister, Iwould have ordered drinks for the entire audience!!