Continuous experimentation by theatre troupes has enriched and diversified local theatre in the last 45 or so years, said Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy director general Liaquat Ali Lucky on Saturday.
Lucky, also chairman of Bangladesh Group Theatre Federation, made the observation while giving a lecture on experimental theatre at a rehearsal room of the academy.
The lecture was organised as part of the ongoing National Theatre Festival 2016, jointly organised by Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy and Bangladesh Group Theatre Federation.
‘In a sense, every theatre production is an exercise in experimentation where a director experiments with his assets to present a story. But experimental theatre has come to denote a specific mode in which a production goes beyond prescriptions and is presented in an innovative way,’ said Lucky.
‘While doing experiments, we must clearly know what we are trying to achieve and why. Then, we should exploit the assets we have in hand like the space, light, sound, cast and crew as well as the story,’ he added, citing experimental works done at home and abroad to make his point.
‘At Shilpakala Academy, we have a hall named Experimental Theatre Tall which is open to troupes willing to experiment, and so far we have got many brilliant productions.’
Lucky, who has been behind several acclaimed productions such as Kanjush and Sonai Madhob, also talked about anthropological and environmental theatres, which are highly experimental in nature and effective in driving home a message.
‘From Shilpakala, we’ve produced several anthropological productions that were presented on large, makeshift stages in chosen sites to portray their history before the audience. I can gladly say that all these productions were well-received,’ he said.
For the newcomers in stage direction, Lucky suggested that they should be aware of local tradition and at the same time the evolving theatre practices in the world so that they can better select their ways to present their stories.
Following the lecture, Kamaluddin Kabir delivered another lecture on set design.
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