We can clearly hear horses neighing and galloping. We know that the cause of the commotion is an imminent blast at a quarry; there is a leader shouting orders for the workers to move away from the danger zone. Sure,one can’t see anything in the trailer uploaded on YouTube,but one can distinctly visualise the scenes after hearing the audio adaptation of the cult Marathi novel Rarang Dhaang written by Prabhakar Pendharkar. The credit goes to the professional sound effects and voice-overs by renowned Marathi actors. We have been associated with the medium of sound novels or snovels for around four years now. We have realised that there isn’t enough awareness about it. Not everyone can access the YouTube trailers. So we thought of holding an audio show of a few famous works, said Sameer Dhamangaonkar,co-founder of Snovel Inc. The two-day audio show will be held on July 13 and 14 at Jyotsna Bhole Sabhagruha (7 pm) and Sudarshan Rangmanch (6 pm) respectively. While on July 13,two short stories Aamod Sunasi Aale and Maajor from the collection Kathamokashi will be presented in an audio format,on July 14,Rarang Dhaang’s audio show will be held.
Currently into different professional fields,Dhamangaonkar,Vaibhav Kulkarni and Ashish Joshi had set up Snovel Inc. four years ago purely out of their love of Marathi literature. A snovel of Kathamokashi by D B Mokashi was their first project,released in 2011. People are becoming habituated to visual medium; there is not much audio content available,especially in Marathi literature. We want more and more people to know about snovels, says Dhamangaonkar,adding that both Aamod Sunasi Aale and Maajor will be around 23-minutes long and Rarang Dhaang will run for three hours and 10 minutes.
Just like a play or a film,a snovel has a proper cast that includes a director,voice-over actors and a music director. While Kathamokashi stories are directed by Vrushali Deshpande,Rarang Dhaang’s director is Nipun Dharmadhikari. Gandhaar Sangoram has rendered music for both the snovels.
Rarang Dhaang,a novel written in 1981,is a story of the protagonist Vishwanath,a civil engineer working in a border road organisation. He is working on a project which is against his engineering principles and he fights with his superiors. The bridge he builds eventually breaks down. He faces a court martial and is asked to quit the job. While creating the snovel,we divided the original novel into 64 scenes. It took us almost one-and-a-half year to develop Rarang Dhaang’s snovel; it was released in August 2012, says Dhamangaonkar. Voice artistes,he says,have a major role to play in a snovel. Thus,they roped in renowned names like Dilip Prabhavalkar,Satish Alekar and Amey Wagh to lend voices for key characters in the novel.
Dhamangaonkar clarifies that an audio show of a snovel is different from the format of a play-reading. In play-reading,the artistes simply read the lines from the play there are no sound effects. Whereas an audio show of a snovel will be hearing a play,live, he explains. According to him,introducing characters in a snovel is a tough task. It becomes difficult when there are too many characters; like Rarang Dhaang has 24 charcters. However,character introduction is achieved through theme background music and dialogues. If the original story has a narrator,it helps. At the same time,we do not touch the soul of the story, he says.
It also helps to have an audibly suitable script for a snovel,Maajor for instance,says Dhamangaonkar. It is a story set in a zoo,the prime characters being three black bucks a mother and her baby and a male villain. Maajor was the perfect choice for snovel. It is a story about hunger for power. The story was such that sound became the character, he says,adding that in a snovel,it is important to choose the right sequencing of events and sometimes they do away with scenes which cannot be expressed in an audio format.