A tale of Mahabharat for theater enthusiasts

Published On: July 27, 2016 10:31 AM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, July 26: Beginning from July 28, a new play ‘Madhavi’ will be staged at Shilpee Group’s Gothale Theater in Battisputali. Tanka Chaulagain of Theater Pragya has adapted and directed it based on Indian writer Bhisham Sahani’s Hindi play of the same name.    

‘Madhavi’ is a mythology play derived from the epic Mahabharat. It narrates the tale of Madhavi, the daughter of Yayati, a former king who has renounced his royalty for the life of a hermit. One day Vishwamitra’s restless disciple Galab appears at his doorstep explaining his strange situation. As ‘guru dakshina’, he is to present the rarest breed of horses to his guru. After much pleading from Galab, the hermit is only able to offer Madhavi to him.

Madhavi, we come to know, has been bestowed with the power of eternal virginity. The play then chronicles the account of Madhavi’s self-sacrifice, including her bodily exploitation at the hands of one king and the other, as she completely gives herself up for the sake of Galab’s mission.    

“Madhavi expands as a powerful testament about the place of women in our society. For centuries, the men have been using them as mere tools and exploiting them for their own benefits,” director Chaulagain said to Republica.

Though written by Sahani in 1982 and circling around an ancient tale, Chaulagain said that viewers will find its subject relevant to the present world. Madan Mani Dixit’s canonical Nepali novel ‘Madhavi’ also depicts the myth of Madhavi. On that, Chaulagain said, “We are hoping that students of Nepali literature will find interest in this play and admirers of Dixit’s work will get an opportunity to experience the story in the form of a play.”

The play features former Miss Teen Archana Panthi in the lead role of Madhavi. She will be supported by the cast of Ghimire Yubaraj, Jeevan Baral, Ram Kac and Saroj Aryal. 

‘Madhavi’ will run from July 28 to August 16. The show will start at 5.30 everyday, except on Tuesdays.  

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