Three local troupes will stage four plays today at three halls of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy as part of the ongoing Ganga-Jamuna Theatre and Cultural Festival.
Prachyanat will stage Koinna at the National Theatre Hall, while Loko Natya Dal will stage Sonai Madhob at the Experimental Theatre Hall. Natyakendra will stage two plays – Banduk Juddha and Gadhar Haat – at the Studio Theatre Hall.
Friday marks the seventh day of the 10-day festival, organised by Ganga-Jamuna Natyautsab Parshad, which will feature a total of 30 plays by 30 troupes from Bangladesh and India, as well as open-air performances by 53 organisations.
Koinna, written by Murad Khan and directed by Azad Abul Kalam, features the conflict between Shariah and Marefat, two dimensions of Islam, through a tale of the legendary Koinna Pir of the greater Sylhet region.
Sonai Madhob, on the other hand, is based on a ballad from Mymensingh Geetika, a collection of folk ballads of the Mymensingh region.
Directed by Liaquat Ali Lucky, the play focuses mostly on the woes of Sonai, a rural, fatherless girl brought up by her maternal uncle. How the society strangles Sonai’s love for Madhab is presented in a traditional pala form in the production.
Natyakendra’s Banduk Juddho and Gadhar Haat, which will be presented with a short interval in between, are adaptations of Egyptian plays – ‘The Trap’ and ‘Donkey Market’ – written by Alfred Farag and Tawfiq al-Hakim, respectively.
Tarik Anam Khan has both adapted and directed the plays.
Bonduk Juddho follows a conspiracy surrounding a hefty bounty announced by the police for an outlaw. The announcement creates tension among a conniving village chairman, a night guard, and the outlaw – who was earlier protected by the chairman but has now fallen out of favour with him.
Gadhar Haat – literally meaning ‘donkey market’ – is a comedy that follows two unemployed men and a farmer couple. It portrays the human nature that sometimes relies more on those who are dumb like donkeys than those who are free-thinking.
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