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Curtain goes up on good, old drama

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Curtain goes up on good, old drama

It is showtime. The Old World Theatre Festival will showcase 13 handpicked plays at the India Habitat Centre from August 16-25. The festival has long been associated with brining a constellation of original scripts that entertain, stimulate, provoke and educate in great measure.

1,2, Tree, a puppet theatre production about a seven-year old boy, his cat Bruce Lee and a plant which they have befriended directed by award winning puppeteer Anurupa Roy opened the festival on August 16. Another delightful opening act was Unravel: An Improv Play About Mental Health directed by Varoon Anand. The ensemble uses spontaneous improvisations, theatre exercises and audience suggestions to devise the final performance on the spot.

Other notableproductions include Gurleen Judge's Hunger Artist inspired by both Franz Kafka's chilling short story by the same name and Dhasal's masterpiece poem Bhook (hunger), a moving portrayal of the agrarian crisis. Tara Arts London brings Black Theatre Broadcast of William Shakespeare's Macbeth, about three outrageous hijras who cook up an explosive brew of treachery, ambition, and passion, setting an Asian family off on a path of bloody self-destruction, directed by Jatinder Verma.

Veteran Director Neelam Man Singh's Gumm Hai's recurring leitmotif follows Pinki, a young girl of eleven who has gone missing from her village for two months. and how an inexplicable loss irrevocably changes the dynamics within a family and the community. Salim Arif's Gudamba is a monologue that keeps the audience at the edge of their seats. The story revolves around an ambitious girl Amina who gets married and thinks that her man of dreams is God's answer to her prayers.

Directed by dancer Sanjukta Wagh, Bombay-based beej's Faqeer Nimaana is a dance and music narrative based on Shah Hussain, a mystic weaver poet from 16th century Lahore. Sanjukta Wagh will be joined by musicians Radhika Sood Nayak, Hitesh Dhutia and Vinayak Netke. Those Left Behind Things directed by Vikram Phukan is a play that follows the journey of Iranian asylum-seeker Hamid set in the dark alleys of Tehran to the neon-lit pier at Brighton.

Based on Annie Zaidi's short story, Jam directed by Shivani Tanksale is a story of college friends who haven't met for years. The festival will close with Makrand Deshpande's Pitaji Please, the story of love between a father and son and they are compelled to keep one lie between them to welcome a new person in their lives.