Wednesday, 23 October 2019

Shobha Deepak Singh's enthralling dance-drama 'Shri Ram' - Footloose and fancy free with Dr.Sunil Kothari

For the past 63 years Sri Ram Bharatiya Kala Kendra's production of Ramleela continues to enchant the audiences. I remember in early fifties whenever I visited New Delhi from Mumbai, during month of October there was always celebrations of Lord Rama. In those years on multiple stages, Narendra Sharma's choreography of Ramleela was staged. Shashidaran Nair used to coordinate and perform, so many actors performed for a long time. Now the new generation of young male and female dancers performs Ramleela under supervision, direction of Shobha Deepak Singh. As a matter of fact, Ramleela of Sri Ram Bharatiya Kala Kendra needs an independent special history.

The present production was inaugurated by the Vice President of India, Mr. M Venkaiah Naidu on 29th September at 6pm. That show was exclusive for invitees and had high security arrangements. We managed to go on 5th October and lo and behold, the magic of the present production held us in thrall. Our generation knows Ramayana backwards. Be it Tulasidas's Chaupais, or Sanskrit shlokas from Valmiki's Ramayana, the popular version of Ramayana and the script written by Arvind Kumar and Neelabh 'Ashk', the spell continues and the moment dancers arrive on the stage playing drums and cymbals and singing, you start humming with them. So powerful is the music arrangement that you start soaking yourself in the lyrics penned by contemporary Hindi poets.

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