For these artistes, theatre is not just about acting, it is an exercise to lead a meaningful life. Theatre experience can teach a person how to present himself in a given circumstance, take a decision on what is good and what is bad and, in general, maintain his physical and mental well-being, says noted theatre activist Ashok Kar of Koraput. Needless to say, theatre has changed the life of many a person. Ahead of World Theatre Day, a few young artistes told Orissa POST how much they value theatre.
Dipanwit Dashmohapatra is a committed theatre artiste of Bhubaneswar and a well-known name on the circuit. He is one of the most sought-after stage actors when it comes to portraying difficult characters.
“For me, theatre is the most perfect and artistic form of creativity. Theatre has given me a ground under my feet and kept me alive. This is one place where I can express myself and feel the real taste of life. A famous American actress of the last century said, theatre is a spiritual and social X-ray of its time. I am not acting because I am happy, I am happy because I am acting,” he said.
Doing theatre is not less than meditation, said stage actor Saunika Sahu, an alumnus of Utkal Sangeet Mahavidyalaya. Even though she works in television and films, stage acting has always been a priority for her.
“I enjoy stage acting most because it offers a lot of opportunities to play different shades at quick intervals which is not possible in the case of serials and films. Besides, theatre has taught me how to face hurdles in life and overcome them,” said Saunika.
However, she is not happy with the present state of theatre as many directors these days dramatise the scripts of Jatras, which is not a good sign for theatre.
A couple of years ago, Sushil Kumar Das caught audience attention in a big way with his solo act in Raktanadi Santarana. However, he had to move from Bhubaneswar to Rourkela for a living and now he is busy teaching theatre to the students of Jhirpani high school there.
“I have learnt the nuances of theatre from two natya gurus – Dolagovind Rath and Simant Mohanty – of Bhubaneswar. But I didn’t get the right opportunity to do theatre when I came to Rourkela due to certain reasons. However, I kept my ties with theatre. A real artiste is never satisfied with his achievements and his craving to do better remains lifelong. I fulfil my suppressed desire to do theatre by designing plays for my students,” said Sushil.
Acting in television and films may make you rich and famous but theatre brushes up your acting skill, said actress Laxmipriya Senapati, popular as Pihu among her fans. The 20-year-old has played central characters in many theatrical productions in the city and garnered appreciation from all quarters.
“At the beginning of my career, theatre acting was a passion for me but gradually it turned into my profession. Acting has not only given me a living, I have got an identity in society as an artiste. Besides, it gives me creative satisfaction and I am happy that I can send a positive message to the society through my acting,” said the actress.
BIJAY MANDAL, OP