Theatrical Performance Depicts Stinking Nambul

Panthoibi Natya Mandir dares shouldering the responsibility to carry out jobs concerning theatrical performance for the last thirty-four years with art loving and participation oriented spirit from many ends. While producing theatrical performances, this performing group has attained a remarkable position as its organizers and arrangers endeavor ever creative participation thereby subduing sitting idle habits. Crowning status of a regular performing group surely casts shadow of availing encouragement of people particularly its surrounding. Needless to say, this group has been constantly in good touch with concerned departments for spreading theatrical messages to the society by its numerous play presentations since its birth.

Panthoibi Natya Mandir has also started organizing Summer School Theatre Workshop for short duration since the year 1987. This year too, it allowed 38 school and college goers as participants in its 8th Summer School Theatre Workshop which was organized jointly with Manipur College Students Union. The organizers claim that organizing such workshop on a trial basis was to make up the vacuum caused by general and formal educational degreed citizens sitting idle seeking Government jobs as its aim. Over and above, as a part of vocational education in such workshops, hidden talents in each individual are to be drawn out requiring less talent to be put in.

The workshop participants were finally engaged for staging out at least a play indulging the freshers to act, dance, dialogue and sing. The zeal of production never turned, only mere a dream but realized staging a short and simple play entitled ‘Dream of Nambul’. Though it looks simple, the theme it carries strikes the ever growing concerns of environmental problem. The group sees man exist on earth with natural environment and if environment does not remain pollution free, man face entrapped existence.

The play was devised in such a manner depicting a storyline in general theatrical performance entailed by Mime in same line. The use of typical traditional costumes both by the men folk and the women folk in the short play and black clad mime performers signifies the performers’ plight of Manipur, an adobe of typical art and culture. Everyone knows and reiterates Nambul is stinking but who cares and tries to cure from such a feeling.

Despite such a scenario, solid wastes have been thrown in and around the course of the river that halves Imphal city and takes shelter to run as nature’s gift less knowing the burden faced by it. The role of Nambul was personified by a young innocent girl showing the unpolluted Nambul of one time sailing boats along the shoreline. Recalling the past, performers travel on boats as sailors carrying marketers with their goods. The language used in the market scene has faulted inviting a contrast with the setting. But the typical Khulang Ishei tune in alluring love notes by a club of fishers in Nambul to a group of girls bathing carelessly in a Hiden of Nambul made the audience enchanted and the performers budding their talents as all the participants are felt good singers. The mime that picturizes the theme in a more communicated way cannot be confined to the particular onlookers present but it would be of international sensibility. The fresher as they did care and aware of their freshness, no deficiency in their acts was prompted.

Nambul rest in a deadly stinking situation and mother Manipur/nature along with her Khonglois let her to sleep on her lap motionless with a mild lullaby. The dream of Nambul is only for implementation of the many crores of rupees worth Indo-French Imphal City Solid Wastes Management Project to be started by March, next year. As a message to overcome any kind of delay or non implementation of such a good cause project, the performers dream representing the people of Manipur. The dream visualizes in coming a team of two Nations and managing the wastes recycled. Nambul by their artistic act, dance, dialogue and song. Really, it is a call for environmental protection for which the Panthoibi Natya Mandir is to be accredited.

*The article is written by By Salam Rupachandra

(Courtesy: The Sangai Express)

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