STELLAR ROLE: Mita Vashisht
Monologues, the country’s only solo theatre fest, which has been part of Kolkata’s cultural kaleidoscope for the last two years, seems set to go pan-India now. And if things go as envisaged, the ongoing festival, a brand property of Kolkata-based Phreedom4Ever, may take different forms of Indian solo performing arts beyond borders as well.

“The idea is to create a right platform for displaying cultural and ethnic excellence of different parts of India and eventually adding the right stroke of commerce to it,” Chaity Ghosh, founder of Phreedom4Ever told FC. The organisation has received a lot of feelers from various other agencies both in India and abroad who want to host it in their respective cities, said Ghosh.

While a Delhi fest is a possibility in the immediate future — the organisers are in talks with thespian Naseeruddin Shah to kick off their first national capital edition — the world stage could take a bit longer as that would require much larger funds.

Acclaimed actress Mita Vashisht started off the Kolkata edition on August 4 with her solo act — Weekend — based on novelist-activist Nirmal Verma’s Teen Ekaant (Three in Solitude). The monologue Weekend is about a woman in love with a married man. But instead of a stereotypical account of extramarital affairs, it deals with layers of solitude and turmoil that such relationships bring about.

“Our endeavour is to offer all forms of solo arts to cultural aficionados within the country and abroad. Therefore, there are dashes of comedy (a performance by Anubhav Pal), dance (by Paramita Saha), music (by Kabir Chattopadhyay and Neel Adhikari),” Ghosh said. All this will be topped off by the premiere of a new play by noted theatre personality and activist, Usha Ganguly. Her play, Rozana, a monologue inspired by works of Franca Rame and Dario Fo, is a collaborative effort with the popular set designer Sanchayan Ghosh.


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