Theatre – A Dying Art
Live performance of drama on stage or theatre an is slowly dying- becoming rare and less attractive. It is present today. in most of the regional languages. Hindi and English but receives less attention and encouragement. The developments of changing times and popularity of other form of entertainments like films and television has put theatre in an awkward position.
In spite of the rich tradition of theatre art, today it’s facing extinction. Only a few regional theatre groups and national theatre groups continue. It’s again the interest and passionate work of a few that keeps the theatre going. As a result, some are active and still functioning with average attendance of people. Though theatre has the advantage of live performance. with immediate reactions of public known and effectiveness of dialogue deliveries let known through claps, it has its short comings or limitations.
In the days before TV, Dramas and plays on stage were most popular form of entertainment depicting the life of that time, stories of kings and queens and stories of courage and valour. People came to watch in large numbers. Some of the plays were so popular that it used to be enacted again or repeated. Even in west theatre was popular and it was a matter of pride if got a chance to watch plays written by great writers.
The post-independence theatre form in India grew-became more realistic, depicting the socio-political and economic scenario. Some of the theatre groups became the representatives of common people. illustrating their daily life.
Some of the famous names of theatre groups are “National school of drama”,’Rangashankara’ from Bangalore (it comes out with sortie of the hest plays) Indian people theatre association, ‘Chetana’,’Prithivi’ and soon. Some of the groups aim to revive Indian theatre and some aim of building social consciousness.
If theatre art is present today in a small way, and is appreciated it is because of the passion of the artists and the love for theatre. Most of the youngsters use theatre for learning and exposure. They use it as a stepping stone to get into television or films. Also, since the money spent on theatre or its production is low there is hardly any money in it as a profession, which discourages youngsters from continuing.
Theatre art though has lost its lustre, is still fighting to exist among the latest sources of entertainment. From the make shift stages in villages to stages at village fairs to huge stages of community halls and club halls- theatre, art has entertained people but is unable to pull enough audience in today’s times of electronic entertainment and short attention span of public.