Girish Karnad’s drama -Bali wonderfully presented by Dhwani Prathisthana Dubai

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By Elias DSouza
Pics by Loyan Rodrigues
Bellevision Media Network

Dubai,23 March 2013: Internationally-acclaimed play ’Bali - The Sacrifice’, written by Jnanapeeth awardee, Padmabhushan Girish Karnad, was successfully staged  at Emirates International School Auditorium, Dubai on Friday.   The play was directed by Prakash Rao Payyar  President Dhwani Pratishthana. 

Every year Dhwani  Pratishthana honoures eminent Kannada theatre personalities  with the ’Dhwani Srirnaga Prashasti’ award, which comprises cash reward and a memento. This year this prestigious award went to Dr Panditaradhya Swamiji.

A brief stage program was organized prior to drama and Dr. Panditaradhya Swamiji  inaugurated the event with lighting of traditional lamp accompanied by Chef Guest of the day Sri Bhasava Raju (IAS & Secretary Kannada Cultural and Information Dept. Karnataka Govn)  ,   Sri Srinivas Sriramgam (MD probell Group),   Mr. Shekar Shetty, (Arab Udupi), Mr. Satish V (Chilly-Villy), James Mendonsa (Reliable Fabricators),  Mr. Praveen Shetty (Fortune Hotel Apartments), Mr. Ramchanchdra Hedge(Spraylite industries), Mr. Sarvotham  Shetty (President – Abu Dhabi Karnataka Sangha), Mr. Satish Mayya, Mr. Prakash Payyar (President, Dwani Prathisthana, Mr. Madhusudan Hegde (Secretary Dwani Prathisthana).  All the guests and sponsors were felicitated with floral bouquets.   
Prakash Payyar delivered the presidential address and Madhusudan briefed about the activities and support to Kannada Literature, arts and drama by Dhwani Prathishtana in his report and thanked all the supporters. 

On this grand celebration, Dr Panditaradhya Swamiji  was awarded  ’Dhwani Srirnaga Prashasti’ for the year 2012-2013 by Sri Basavraj.  He was honoured and offered with shawl, garland, flower bouquet, fruit basket, citation and a memento.
Swameeji spoke on the occasion and requested all associations to join together to form unity and support the cultural programmes.  He praised Dhwani Prathisthana honourng with this special award and also appreciated their efforts in keeping the Kannada Drama, art and literature alive through their organization.

Also on the occasion Sri Basavraj ( IAS the secretary of department of Kannada cultural and language, govt of Karnataka) was honoured with Floral bouquet, traditional shawl and fruit basket and a memento . He spoke on the occasion and explain the support and facility that government rendering for the development of the cultural activities. The main sponsor of the program Srirangam was also honoured by the digniories and guests on dais.He also spoke few words on the occasion.



A book was released titled  “Pom Pom Railu “ a Kataha Sankalana by Sri Gopinath Rao,  A well known compare in U.A.E ,  Arathi Adiga  conducted the stage program efficiently and superbly. 

All the support sponsors and media representative,  sounds, lighting, music, stage setting and all supporting people of drama  were called upon the dais and were honoured with flower bouquettes. Vote of thanks proposed by Sudarshan Hegde.
The much awaited Kannnada drama Bali began with a supper acting by all the characters. With nice combination of light, music, sound effect and supported by dance.  The acting by all main character was supper and beyond anyone’s expectation.  A large number of audiences enjoyed the drama thoroughly.

Dony correa played the leading role ‘Raja” and his wife Asha Correa played the role of”Rani” . Prabhakar kamath played the role of “Mahuth” and Gopika Maiyya played the role of “Raja Matha”. The drama written by Dr. Girish Karnad and was directed by Prakash Rao Payyar. Also supported by other artists interms of dance and stage setting.


At the end the artists and the people supported to make this successful were honoured. .  Sri Basavaraju said he watched a most beautiful drama and praised the characters played by all the artists.  He wanted to leave the drama earlier but watching the acting by U.A.E artists he just could not leave.  He compared them the professional artists such Ranga – stage artists back in Karnataka.  He wished them good luck and hounoured them with floral bouquets.  The whole programme concluded around 10.30.


Bali: The Sacrifice – The plot

The Bali is the re-product of Jain Epic story “ Yashodhara Charite “.  Girish Karnad has done total justice by shortening it and presented beautiful with four main characters without losing its original essence or value.  The Sacrifice comprises of four characters- the Queen, the King, the Queen-Mother and the Mahout. The Queen is a Jain and she marries a Hindu King. Out of love for his spouse, the King converts to Jainism but is unable to come to terms with the new faith. Jainism dictates non-violence and Hinduism believes in the practice of sacrifice or bali, which means violence. The Queen-Mother is a devout Hindu who believes in sacrifices. The King vacillates from one end to the other, from Hinduism to Jainism, from the Queen-Mother to his wife but is unable to settle down with any faith.


In the climactic event of the play, the Queen enchanted by the beautiful voice of a low caste, ugly Mahout, the Elephant-Keeper, and mates with him.  Soon after, the incident comes to the knowledge of the King and the Queen-Mother.  Being a Jain, the King cannot indulge in violence by killing the Mahout and avenging the wrong of desecrating the sanctity of marital bond. The question which haunts the King and the Queen-Mother is how to placate the gods and goddesses for this act of sin. Finally the Queen-Mother tells the King that to placate for the sin committed, a sacrifice has to be made. The Queen does not want to indulge in this mock sacrifice but is forced to by the King. The question posed is whether intended violence is as offensive as real violence—whether the thought of mock-sacrifice is equivalent to actual sacrifice.

All the above characters played by U.A.E artists has commendable and praiseworthy.  Each artist has done justice to the character they have played and wonderfully acted which was applauded by the huge audience present.


A brief of Dr Panditaradhya Swamiji -

Dr Panditaradhya Swamiji, a postgraduate from the University of Mysore, entered ascetic life and becamethe pontiff of Sri Math, Sanehalli, Branch of Sri Taralabalu Jagadguru Bruhanmath, Sirigere. He is a literary person, social and religious reformer, political guide and also a patron of art and culture.

Swamiji’s activities in the field of theatre are remarkable. He is responsible for the establishment of Sri Shivakumara Kalasangha and Shivasanchara, a theatre repertory in Sanehalli. The sangha extended its performances to the remote villages of the state to eradicate superstitions and blind beliefs prevailing even today. The dramas were widely attracted by the rural and urban mass.



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Comments on this Article
Raviraj, Dubai/ Udupi Sat, March-23-2013, 10:07
Very well organized programme by Dwani Pratistana.Superb drama and all roles were very good.
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