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Muktadhara - International Forum Theatre Festival

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Published on Jan 10, 2016

About Muktadhara:

The important reason for organizing this Bi-annual International Forum Theatre Festival is that in the past 14 years it becomes an international meeting ground for Forum Theatre teams as well as those trained by Jana Sanskriti all over India. Each of these teams are active in their own regions; most of them are also heading organizations engaged in struggles to assert the rights of the marginalized. Though all these teams are linked to each other through their commitment to the Forum Theatre movement, they have had very little opportunity to interact with each other and see each other’s work. At this Festival we were able to provide this valuable opportunity. This interaction has, as seen from the last six festivals, no doubt imbibed each individual and team with the feeling that they are not alone in this challenging task of establishing dialogue in society.

In our work on Forum Theatre we have dealt with a range of issues which are relevant to different groups in different regions – Displacement, malpractices in the public distribution system, communalism, exploitation by contractors, undemocratic culture of political parties,and corruption in the Panchayat, blind superstitions, domestic violence, lack of quality in rural primary education, illicit liquor etc.

Usually Forum Theatre is performed before audiences who are also facing the problem portrayed in the play. Since problem solving and understanding the problem sociologically through collective action is the primary intention, the spectators and actors form a homogenous group. But in this Festival like the previous six that we had, we will again try to have all kinds of interest groups involved and interested in theatre of the oppressed in the audience, from all over the world! Since Forum Theatre allows room for debate and discussion, the audience emerge from the experience with a more humane outlook.

Finally, the name ‘Muktadhara’! ‘Mukta’ means free and ‘Dhara’ is a flowing stream. A flow that is free from dogma and all those structural constructs that prevent dialogue between people, is what is implied by the term Muktadhara – celebrating movement in peace and togetherness! This is when the glory of development is said to have taken place – participation in togetherness.

Next Muktadhara VII will be held between 5 - 20 December 2016. To register write to muktadhara.janasanskriti@gmail.com

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