Iris C F Gomes
The gift of light has not been appreciated as much as it should be and the true nature of its wonders are withheld from the common man due to lack of awareness and understanding. To illumine minds, 2015 has been dedicated as the Year of Light in celebration of this treasure of luminosity.
Taking inspiration from this endeavour, the Mustard Seed Art Company (established 1987) is all set to entertain, and as it always does, subtly educate its audience through the medium of a new play by playwright Isabel Santa Rita Vás. Whistling in the Light has been co-directed by Isabel Santa Rita Vás and Kiran Bhandari.
One might recall The Story of Light Festival held earlier this year, which was an innovative and educative experience brought to Goa by Nash Paul D’Souza, Jaya Ramchandani and their team. ‘The Story of Light Festival brought it to my notice. And yes, they did a fantastic job, their initiatives were beautiful!’ says Ms Vás. She clarifies, ‘The plot has nothing to do with The Story of Light Festival, but the inspiration and the idea behind the play, yes. The plot is fantasy and satire and physical theatre and fun.’
The play is a result of musings on the natural and artificial sources of illumination, the cycle of day and night, and the symbolic significance of light and darkness, among other things. The plot of Whistling in the Light unfolds in 2030, in a town not unlike your own, and among people not unlike those familiar to you. Carrying age old themes of love, jealousy and power, the stage is set for an escalation of travails with the onslaughts of socio-political machinery. The familiarity will allow for empathy, which will in turn enable us to gain a fresh perspective of light.
Kiran Bhandhari has been associated with the amateur theatre company since 2003 and he is making his directorial debut with his 22nd play. He was drawn to the theatre by the example of Ms Vás. He says, ‘I was her student at BA level. Her lectures were so interesting and motivating. I was touched by her humbleness and concern for every student. I had decided to work with her in some way. During that time I was working to support my education and my family. Once I completed my education I joined the group.’
Kiran deems his work as co-director a big responsibility and feels he is still under the tutelage of Ms Vás. He says, ‘As an actor, I concentrated on my role, character, clarity of voice, etc. A director has to have a lot of patience and understand all the above mentioned areas in the case of all the actors. I am still learning, taking tiny little steps.’
The cast consists of Roger Fernandes as Anand, Rishvi Pragasam as Kareena, Sharika Fernandes as Vitorina, Daphne Pearl de Souza as Malaika and Kiran Bhandari as Dinesh. Anaruella Fernandes Pereira, Kimberly Noronha, Joshua Antonio Jaques, Virginia de Melo e Granjo, Corran de Souza are the other citizens in the play. .
Whistling in the Light is to be performed on:
15th May at Gomant Vidya Niketan, Margao
16th May at Ravindra Bhavan, Vasco
18th May at DMK, Kala Academy, Panjim
All shows will run from 6.30 pm to 8.30 pm