Synopsis of the Play
There is a whole story of Indian womanhood played out in a large enough social space covering middle class homes (in Gudiya Ghar from a dolls house and Parichay from Arnold Wesker’s roots), the rural women at the extreme margins (In Lok-Katha and Rudali), as well as dramatic moments in history in 19th century Bengal (In Garey Baiery), Facist Germany ( In Brecht’s the Jewish wife),in 19th century 30 years war in Germany Resistance and rebellion critical and understanding as assertion register different response to deprivation , discrimination and injustice, with Usha Ganguli’s sense of history and warmth of concern never betraying her into facile realism or sentimentally. Kamala (whose In-laws tried to kill her because she had 3 daughters), The city girl Madhuri (Whose In-laws forced her to commit suicide. All her women emerge as critics of life rising to higher state of realisation as they grow within their plays and life.
Usha Ganguli,who has established herself as one of India’s major directors, leading the theatre group Rangakarmee for nearly twenty eight years now, still remains essentially an activist who loves to take on challenging subjects and seeks to grow in the process. Her artistic growth as a director has been rooted in concern to react and respond to all those forces that inhibit the fulfillment of humanity. Professionally, a lecturer in Hindi languages and literature at Kolkata and a 1998 Sangeet natak Akademi Awardee, recognition for her work has come in the form of various awards. Awarded the best actress by the West Bengal Govt. for her performance in Gudia Ghar in 1982, she has gone on to receive the best production awards (1986 Mahabhoj : 1991 Court Martial), best director’s award (1992 Rudali) best music, (1996 Beti Aayee) and the Safdar Hashmi Puraskar in 1997 from Uttar Pradesh Sangeet Natak Akademi.
As a critic and commentator on theatre, she has contributed both within and outside india in Bangladesh, Pakistan and the U.S.A. and written and adapted plays like Prastav, Rudali, Khoj, Inspector Matadin Chand Par, Antaryatra, Kashinama, Bhor, Badnam Manto, Sarhad Paar Manto, Manto Aur Manto, Manasi and Chandalika.
The two living legends of Indian Theatre, Shri Khaled Choudhury and Shri Tapas Sen, whose blessings encourage us to move ahead and constantly look for imaginative ideas. Their total commitment towards theatre inspires us and we owe a lot of what we have achieved to them.