When we think of folk theatre, we think of colour. Dark blues and brick reds for royal characters, browns for evil characters and bright yellows to show joy. Colours are such an integral part of the Indian consciousness. In a divided country, colours seem to be the uniting common thread, a thread that folk theatre spins so beautifully to its advantage.
Folk theatre in India appears to be a reflection of our beliefs, social practices, customs and traditions, an art form that keeps the basic elements of drama intact, while taking on the stories, flavours and colours of the region it belongs to. The various shapes in this edition’s design represent the sponge that is Indian folk theatre. Each shape seems to have its own individual identity and colour, but together they make up the rich tapestry of folk theatre traditions in the country.
In this May 2021 edition of Thespo Ink, two emerging artists take us through their fascinating encounters with folk theatre. In Young Perspective, Meghana AT narrates how liberating it was to be insulted by a Sangeetbari performer, while Hrishabh Kanti tells us about when he met Yakshagana, in Lead Pencil. What’s more, you ask? A reading list curated especially for you from arts-based therapy expert Aanand Chabukswar's arsenal of plays that fuse folk theatre with contemporary narratives. Last but not least, a quick recap of what we’ve been up to on our corner of the internet in What’s On At Thespo and your introduction to a BRAND NEW team of Thespo fellows! Go read!