1 year ago
Pijada ki Chari: Freeing the caged bird
When power seeps through the base of Putali village, the once-a-merry-land transforms into a center of chaos and disorder. Until the villagers grow wary, many lives have paid a price of deception that impairs their societal peace. Witnessing the phase, the play ‘Pijada ki chari’ (A little bird in cage) pictures the scenario of how ‘Kamalari Pratha’ shattered and dislocated numerous lives.
Amidst the crowd of minority groups, Sukhlis’s (Bhumika Tharu) family is a representation that foretells the stories of a hundreds of the other few at the village. Known as a rural community of farmers, their lands are the only assets that the villagers earn their living from. But all their daily toils on the field turn futile when the lands are deceptively claimed by the persons in power and authority. Sukhli is one among the group of oppressed who tends to face the brunt of slavery ending up as a bonded labor in Dayaram’s (Manoj Maharjan) house. In the course of this journey many lives go through extreme changes.
Witnessing the phase of Kamlari Pratha, ‘Pijada ki chari’ connects us to the era of feudalism where peasants were oppressed and made to work as bonded labors. The representation of bonded slavery system could hardly be a new storyline to pick for plays. However, the execution of the play certainly wins the bet. Otherwise, a heart wrenching and intense issue, the play makes you light at heart with subtlety and soft punch of humor. Characters in painted facial mask added intensity and frivolity to the play while few scenes carried in shadow act added an innovative flavor to the play. With a crafty usage and execution of props, the play thoroughly holds the attention of the viewers.
“I hardly believe that things in life go in a straight way. Sometimes doing tragedies we tend to forget that even in tragic moments you can add different colors of emotions. So, I came up with the idea of presenting this issue with grief, laugher and fun,” expresses director Maxime Sechaud.
Four actors including Paslakpa Sherpa, Manoj Maharjan, Sunita Bade, Bhumika Tharu and Aarush Jung Saru playing different characters and pushing an extra effort on stage is an entertaining experience. “More than carrying the play and wearing different characters effectively, the reality backstage was quite challenging as each of us played more than two characters with every changing scene,” shares one of the lead actors, Paslakpa Sherpa.
- by Dr Bivek Singh Rathore
- by Sangita Shrestha