Gripping Tales

Gripping Tales

An upcoming theatre festival will stage plays focusing on environmental issues faced by the city

An upcoming theatre festival will stage plays focusing on environmental issues faced by the city

On the dark stage,a group of teenagers is trying to find their friend Geet. They head to the police station and try to file a missing persons’ complaint. In due course,the inspector discovers that Geet is not a real person,but the inner voice of the kids,suppressed due to the gap between them and their parents. What follows is the journey of the inspector,a confused single parent himself,towards understanding children and helping other parents connect with their kids.

This act in Gayab Geet,a play directed by noted Marathi actor Vibhawari Deshpande traces the angst of adolescence through the perspective of these young adults. A part of the Grips Theatre Festival 2013,the play will be staged in the city on May 5.

A joint initiative by Maharashtra Cultural Center,Janwani,Pune Municipal Corporation,Artsphere Kalyani Nagar Resident Association and Cosmica,the festival specifically aims at spreading awareness about the environmental issues the city is facing.


Conceptualised by Juee Deogaokar and Anubha Doshi of Cosmica,the festival will focus on mobilising the local community and increasing public participation in various art and culture activities. The festival will also commemorate 25 years of Grips theatre movement in Pune as well as India.

Grips theatre was started in Berlin,Germany,to offer a new perspective to children’s theatre and was launched in Pune in 1986,under the guidance of veteran actor Mohan Agashe. Since then,this form of theatre has gained wide appreciation and popularity in Pune as well as across India.

The three-day festival will also showcase the play Nayee Bahar,which has been directed by Shubhangi Damle. It is a story of two young children living in a city in the year 2020 where pollution levels have reached a new high. A neighbour,who’s just moved into their locality,takes the children and parents on a journey to discover the role of humans in saving nature. The play ends with the children taking a more proactive role in saving environment.

Kiran Kulkarni,director of Janwani,says,“We are organising a drive at Joggers Park on May 4 to spread awareness regarding solid waste management. We also intend to showcase a one-minute movie on waste management before the plays are staged in the next two days.”

Deokar says that the festival is an attempt to bring theatre to the communities and engage them socially,environmentally and artistically. “Through this festival,we aim to develop community identity and make it enjoyable for all Puneites,” she adds.

Grips Theatre Festival will be held from May 3-5