In this series, listen to works of lesser-known poets and writers through readings by theatre artistes
Soumitra Dharap in a reading
Ever since the lockdown began, theatre artistes have been trying to re-imagine existing content and bring fresh pieces on screen for audiences to engage in, from home. Pune's Aasakta Kalamanch toyed with the idea too, before launching the project Art in Halt, a series of readings. After an April launch, it is now nine videos old. "We wanted to keep it simple, and reach out to people in such times," says Hrishikesh Pujari of Aasakta Kalamanch, adding, "We decided to stick to lesser-known stories and poems — Ideally, works that people haven't heard before."
With a simple shoot and upload format, members of the troupe are tasked with selecting a piece in a language of their choice. So far, Marathi, Hindi and English works have made an appearance. The videos are uploaded as and when they are ready. It's an initiative the group plans to continue post-lockdown, for five to six months at the very least. "The plan ahead is to invite performers outside the group to join in with readings. Also, look out for a version of Hamlet and Othello in Rajasthani," reveals Pujari.
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