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Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Women's Day!?!@#?

Here is the ultimate straw. One more American thingie finding its way in to the Indian context in the name of embracing the global village. I mean... as a kid when I read my Dennis the Menace, I thought that particular comic back-issue which contains the episode about Columbus Day, America Day, Custer's Day, blah blah day, blog blog day... was just a comic book joke. But Amigosh (I mean, omigosh!) it is reality. We had the Valentine's creeping into our ethos. Then came the Halloween. Now World Women's Day. I mean, I thought if you called someone Woman! was an insult and you were supposed to say Lady! So shouldnt it be Ladies Day? Or is that another occasion? And oh, my mother has this question: Why don't they ask the woman on the streets or the slums and reproduce their thoughts on this thing as is where is? Why do they always feature those Ethnic in Sarees or Salwars or Chic in Business class suit Working Women on the pages? Or those artists, performers, writers, Bachao-ers with or without cause, Movie stars... Quo Journos? If they talked about the women on the street or the rag-picking girls, it is with a patronising sense of matriarchy (oxymoron?). So asks my mother. As for me... I care not too hoots for any of these days. I don't even care for men, if you asked me. Am as straight as I come, black white and lotsa grey in between. Like Scrooge said: BAH! HUMBUG!!

Oh by the way, I guess we should have a Blog Day, no?

Friday, March 04, 2005

Being Professional... a Theatre Professional !

Oh I suddenly discovered... I just completed 3 years out of my job. 3 years to the day have I been only a theatre maker. Producer, director, actor, designer, technician, stagehand, prompter, workshop leader... theatre academician. All roles in theatre. What more could one want! Making money doing theatre? Well...umm... ahem... you kidding? No, honestly, haven't done badly on that count either. Of course now, I haven't bought a bike nor bus during this period, but then haven't had a day off from theatre in some form or other these 1000-odd days. And it set me thinking, now that I woke up from the reverie called theatre.

What does being theatre professional mean to me? What has that made out of me? What, above all, have I given to theatre?

It has made a better person out of me
I realise a certain need as an artist to give - not just to my co-artists but to humanity in general - than take. Commerce is essential. But what is quintessential is the satisfaction we put back in the hearts of the audience and the smile we smear on their faces as they leave the venue of your performance. And it has made me quieter and less flashy. May be I guess I have travelled the following route: Enthusiasm - excitement - passion - obsession - analysing - theorising - practising - evaluating - evolving - will continue to evolve... as a better human being!