Though I have been mentally stressed as I struck up in India unprepared, I am trying my best to use this time as purposefully as possible.
One of the exciting times for me was watching a live play live last weekend. I got this opportunity after more than two and hald decades. I was thrilled as it was on the life of my hero Dr Ambedkar. I watched it for two consecutive days.
As a child and as a teenager, I would go for miles to other villages to watch art forms of various kinds and forms. This musical play based on the real story of Dr Ambedkar's life (up to burning of Manu Smriti) was a feast to my eyes and senses. It was created by a school teacher Mr Patibandla Ananda Rao with a cast of nearly 80 actors. According to him it was not yet perfected, it was played only a couple of times so far. Still, it was so perfect that I started thinking how marvelous it would be watching it after a while when it was perfected.
I am was not an art critic, still I would like to express my feelings.
The play was so real that I could not control my emotions while watching some of the scenes. The performance of the child actor (little Dr Ambedkar) was superb, so was that of the actor played adult Ambedkar. Every other actor performed well and the music was melodious.
I surprised how such a talented man (Mr Ananda Rao) was unnoticed so far. I was told his another play, Padamata Gali (Western wind) based on the globalization, was a superhit. Talent, when not recognized and noticed dies out. It is very much real in the case of talented Dalits. I remember watching such great art forms of various kinds as a child. They are all dying out for lack of patronage and invasion of unrealistic movie culture. Recording (even in crude form) of such dying art forms of Dalits and Tribals was one of my pet projects. But, it never took off for obvious reasons.
At the end of the play, while talking about the art form he used in the play Mr Ananda Rao spoke about an old man who can recite 20 different plays from memory. How great it would be if someone come forward and immortalized the man and his talent before it is too late? How wonderful it would be if someone take the task of recoding various Dalit and Tribal art forms before they are died out?
It needs dedication, sincerity, and above all money. Something needs to be done before it is too late.
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