Jagriti Theatre presents a dramatised reading of The Crucible on World Theatre Day

The show is a dramatised reading and will be presented by an ensemble of 18 actors and directed by Arundhati Raja
A picture of the rehearsal
A picture of the rehearsal

This Sunday is World Theatre Day, and several theatre artistes and performers in the city plan to celebrate the occasion with interesting and unique events. One such show is The Crucible - Rehearsed Reading. The 1953 play by Arthur Miller, which won the Tony Award for Best Play, is a fictional dramatic account of the Salem witch trials that took place in Massachusetts during the late 1600s. The show is a dramatised reading and will be presented by an ensemble of 18 actors and directed by Arundhati Raja.

Speaking about why this particular drama was selected for the show, Arundhati says, “The Crucible is a script I have been wanting to stage for years. I hope through this performance, people will be able to draw parallels between the narrative and what is happening in our country right now, politically and socially.” The original play, when it opened on Broadway in 1953, was received with mixed reviews. It was written four years after Miller had won the Pulitzer Prize for Death of a Salesman. However, now, The Crucible is considered a classic and it continues to evoke interest among audiences across the world. The Crucible throws light on the conflict between the Puritan colonists of Massachusetts and the Native Americans. The story explores the themes of civil liberties, isolation from civilisation and lack of stability due to theocratic governance. “Though the play was written earlier, it is still socially relevant. It may sound like a cliche, but it is true in this case. Yes, it was about a witch hunt. But what was causing the witch hunt? There was this theocratic society for men, led by men, and theocratic to a point that all these men were considered to be representatives of God on Earth. I like the title The Crucible so much because it so aptly communicates what the playwright is saying,” explains the director.

The presentation at Jagriti will be followed by an interactive session with Aditya Sondhi, a senior advocate who practises in Bengaluru and New Delhi. “We felt it was good to get Aditya to interact with the audience after the reading. So many situations (from the play) are relevant today. Aditya will speak about these issues,” says Arundhati. Funds raised from the show will go towards running Jagriti Theatre and supporting artistes associated with the space.

Rs 500. March 27, 3 pm. At Whitefield

ayeshatabassum@ newindianexpress.com

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