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Pune, February 7: The much awaited Vinod Doshi Memorial Theatre Festival is back again in its new avatar Saarang Theatre festival supported by Parimal & Pramod Chaudhari and organised by Sahitiy Rangabhoomi Pratishthan. The gracious and rare cultural gift in the form of annual theatre festival to Pune city given by the Doshi family ten years ago is being carried forward uninterrupted by the Sahitya Rangabhoomi Pratishthan thanks to the generous support extended by Parimal and Pramod Chaudhari. The festival has served as a platform for multi lingual theatre in the city for a decade will now be known as the ‘Saarang Theatre Festival’. An announcement to this effect was made by Ashok Kulkarni, Managing Trustee of the Sahitya Rangabhoomi Pratishthan and also the director of the festival during a Press Conference held in the city today.

Parimal Chaudhari, who has extended the financial support to the fest, was also present on the occasion along with the noted personalities from film and theatre fraternity including Satish Alekar, Mohit Takalkar, Atul Kumar and Suraj Parasnis.

Thus, the first edition of the Saarang Theatre festival being organized by the Sahitya Rangabhoomi Pratishthan with support from Parimal and Pramod Chaudhari will take place between February 25th and March 1st at the Yashwantrao Chavan Auditorium at Kothrud. Timing of the plays that would be staged during the fest would be 7.30pm onwards on all days. Tickets are available on and at the Yashwantrao Chavan Auditorium.

As many as five different plays in Hindi-English, Marathi, Tamil, Hindi – Urdu, and Hindi which are gaining praise among theatre lovers will be showcased in the festival including Director Atul Kumar’s ‘Detective 9-2-11’ (Hindi – English) on February 25th, A Marathi Play titled ‘Davikadun Chauthi Building’ directed by Suraj Parasnis on February 26th, Tamil Play ‘Chandala –Impure’ directed by Kumaran Valavan on February 27th, Mohit Takalkar directed ‘Chaheta’ a Hindi-Urdu play on February 28th and ‘Deewar’ a Hindi play directed by Sunil Shanbag on March 1st.

Speaking about this theatre fest Ashok Kulkarni, who will continue to be the Festival Director said, “The tradition of giving a platform to some contemporary and off beat works in theatre will be continued with the same enthusiasm and zeal as in the past 10 years. Plays from other than Marathi language is the differentiating factor of this festival so we stand committed to present the best from various languages to theatre lovers in the city.”

“In the past 10 years we have made a successful attempt to showcase plays from multiple languages like Hindi, English, Kannada, Punjabi and Gujrathi. In fact, some plays which became popular in theatre circles all across the country were staged first here like Gajab Kahani, Une Pure Shahar Ek and Sindhu, Sudhakar, Rum aani Itar”, he added.

“We are happy to extend support and be a part of this noteworthy initiative in theatre in Pune. This form of art has been known for giving way to creativity in communicating important messages to the society. Such a festival provides a wonderful opportunity to the art savvy citizens of Pune to witness the way theatre is active in the current times”, said Parimal Chaudhari.

Details of the plays to be presented in Saarang Theatre Festival are as follows

Monday, February 25th
Name of the play- ‘Detective 9-2-11’, Language – Hindi-English, Production House – ‘The Company Theatre’, Director- Atul Kumar
Storyline – The play is set in Mumbai in the black and white era. A casual evening at a theatre quickly turns into a fast-paced chase sequence for the unsuspecting hero when gun shots are fired at the legendary Opera House during a performance. A mysterious woman lands in his arms pleading for help amid mob chaos and he reluctantly agrees, walking right into an International spy ring primed and ready to unleash a treacherous scheme that will disarm the nation and give away control of a vital defence secret. Without any warning or heroic intentions, our hero finds that he is the only one who can stop this outrageous plan.

Tuesday, February 26th

Name of the play – ‘Daavikadun Chauthi Building’, (This is the inaugural show / premier of the play), Language- Marathi, Production House – ‘Theatron Entertainment’, Director-Suraj Parasnis
Storyline – ‘Daavikadun Chauthi Building’ casts a light on four stories, written by four different playwrights – Manaswini Lata Ravindra, Abhiram Joshi, Virajas Kulkarni and Omkar Gokhale. The stories take place in the same Housing Society, separated by genre; but bound together by one common event – an electrical power outage. A former child star turned vlogger struggling to stay relevant, a young couple burdened by the looming danger of an accidental pregnancy, two girls whose new lives are colliding with their earlier sense of belonging and a joint family get-together that goes awry – all these stories, form an intricate tapestry of sorts.

Wednesday, February 27th
Name of the play- ‘Chandala’ (‘Impure’), Language- Tamil (With English Surtitles)
Production House – ‘Indianostrum Theatre, Pondichery’,Director- Koumarane Valavane
Storyline – This is the story of two mythical lovers: Romeo and Juliet renamed as Jack and Janani and set in the Indian context of cast discrimination. The story of this play was triggered by quite a few honour killing incidents in Tamil Nadu. It tries to explore the caste system from the point of view of the contemporary Indian youth, how they are coping with this system, what their aspirations are, what are their values and how their being is affected by their place in a community and the place of the community in our society.

Thursday, February 28th
Name of the play- ‘Chaheta’, Language- Hindi- Urdu
Production House – ‘Asakta Kalamach, Pune’, Director- Mohit Takalkar
Storyline -Three great religions share the story of Abraham binding and nearly sacrificing his son. CHAHETA (The Beloved) imagines what happened after father and son come down from the mountain. The play explores the psychological scars wrought upon Abraham’s son after surviving his traumatic event. Did Abraham bring his young son to the mountain for the purpose of human sacrifice, as his wife and son believe, or was he simply trying to toughen up his sensitive young son with a father-and-son camping trip, as he claims? Did an angel of God intervene on the mountain as scriptures dictate? Chaheta’s anachronistic hallucination of family dysfunction walks a fascinating line between inclusivity and alienation. Ultimately, this intense allegorical drama attempts to question the sanity and sanctity of people who claim to talk with God. Via a kind of violent abstraction that sometimes borders on the absurd, it concerns itself as a dark metaphor, and takes us to a place far more insidious than we could’ve bargained for.
Friday, March 1st
Name of the play- ‘Deewar’, Language- Hindi
Production House – ‘Arpana Theatre’ and ‘Prithvi Theatre’, Mumbai, Director- Sunil Shanbag
Storyline – In a fictional jagir in north India, two rich zamindar brothers rule over a happy family, and a harmonious community of peasants. The unexpected arrival of foreign visitors seeking refuge is the beginning of a dramatic turn of fortunes. Ruthless machinations by the foreigners split the community and turn brother against brother. First staged in 1945 by Prithviraj Kapoor’s Prithvi Theatres, Deewar is a fascinating allegory of colonization and partition. In 2018 it gives a remarkable insight into a historical moment full of promise for a new nation