On Thursday, Kalakriti Art Gallery and The Little Theatre, Hyderabad came together to remember and pay rich tributes to playwright, actor, director and Jnanpith awardee Girish Karnad, who recently passed away in Bengaluru.
The evening started off with clips from the film Utsav, followed by the Kannada Theatre Anthem that Karnad had penned.
Later, excerpts from his popular plays, including Hayavadana, Tughlaq, The Fire & The Rain, The Dreams of Tipu Sultan, Boiled Beans on Toast and Crossing to Talikota were read.
The readers, including Bizeth Bannerjee, B.S. Prakash, Chandana Chakrabarti, Navanita Lahiri, Sarala Mahidhara, Shankar Melkote, Sreekumar and Vijay Marur enthralled the packed house by reading out select passages.
Describing him as ‘a visionary playwright’, they further explained how Karnad, one of the most towering personalities of Kannada literature, has left an indelible impact on the history of contemporary Indian dramaturgy. Priya Adarkar and Aparajita Sinha, who were personal friends of the accomplished litterateur, recalled some sweet memories about their association.
“I knew Girish from a long time as he was my neighbour in Bengaluru. Once he couldn’t get the logistics for accommodating his play Bikre Bimb in Hyderabad. So I had to coordinate with the University of Hyderabad, which ultimately hosted the play. All the stalwarts in the city came to witness the brilliant Hindi play. Also, another hidden side to Girish was that he was a great comic actor who used to imitate several people,” said Aparajita Sinha. Meanwhile, Priya Adarkar added, “I have seen him from close quarters and have several great memories of and with him. Not only was he a great human being but also a man of principles and values. He was always outspoken and never shied away from expressing his views. His plays were a blend of myth and history.” The proceedings ended with a clip from Samskara, Karnad’s first film....