For researching and photo-documenting the tambu talkies (tent cinemas) that follow the route of the religious jatras (fairs) in Maharashtra. The history of the tambu talkies will be constructed by mapping the film distribution cycle and exhibition patterns, gathering old photographs and documents, and recording oral histories of the proprietors and distributors of the tambu talkies. Photo-documentation will capture the current state of the touring tent cinemas, covering such aspects as the audience profile, the ingenious projection systems and the innovative advertising strategies.
For the development and staging of an adaptation of Kuo Pao Kun’s play for children, Day I Met the Prince based on Antoine Saint Exupery’s classic Le Petit Prince. This interative performance, featuring dance, music and magic, will encourage the young to explore their own concerns and become more keenly aware of the world around them.
For the creation of The Doorway, an exploration of real and imagined stories in the tradition of Grotowski’s Theatre Laboratory, for presentation and discussion in art galleries, theatre institutions and alternative spaces across the country. This evolving performance will deconstruct the craft of acting with minimal spoken text and design support, making it strongly experimental in nature and challenging the actor-spectator equation.
For research into theatre censorship in Maharashtra. Using Vijay Tendulkar’s banned play, Sakharam Binder, as a point of reference, the study will investigate censorship in the larger context of the socio-cultural history of theatre, and look into authoritarian state censorship as well non-state agencies’ agenda of silencing and suppressing theatrical expression. The play “S*x, M*rality, Cenc*rship” is the outcome of the grant got nominated for META awards in 10 categories.
For research into the life of Gond artist Jangarh Singh Shyam and the events, characters and art philosophies that led to his untimely death in Japan. The researcher will identify appropriate areas of arts discourse for reading and analysis, and will travel to interview various individuals who have played significant roles in Jangarh Singh Shyam’s life. The research will subsequently provide the basis for a novel.
For the development of a new choreographic work titled The Rhythm Divine—a collaboration between dancer-choreographer and a master of the Pung Cholom form of Manipur, and his team. The artists will try to assimilate each other’s movement styles and then, through an improvisatory sawaal-jawaab process, create a new contemporary ‘stage-scape’ and idiom of dance.
For preparatory research towards a screenplay for a feature-length film on Hindi writer Nirmal Verma. Through in-depth historical research on Verma’s European period, study of Verma’s published and unpublished writings, interviews with individuals who played significant roles in Verma’s life, the researcher will extend his literary knowledge of Nirmal Verma into a cinematic language.
For development of Family Tree, a film installation for public space.Family Tree will explore the psychological consequences of migration, especially loneliness, melancholy and the emotional turbulence caused by life and work in alien surroundings. The installation will attempt to deform the concept of the family tree in order to consider 21st century family lives, which are dynamic and constantly in motion.
For the dissemination of Cotton 56, Polyester 84, a theatre production set in the mill lands of Mumbai. This production is the outcome of an earlier IFA grant and brings to light issues concerning the lives of the mill workers of Girangaon who lost their jobs en masse as a result of the textile strike in Mumbai in the 1980s. To fulfil the play’s artistic and political agenda, twenty performances of the play will be staged for working classes, primarily in Mumbai and other places in Maharashtra, in order to provoke new ideas and perceptions about their own identity and position in today’s world.
For interdisciplinary workshops involving students of creative writing, film and graphic design towards generating short narratives, a screenplay and a storyboard on the life of Dadasaheb Phalke. The workshops will follow a sequential order, with the short narratives feeding into the writing of a screenplay, which will in turn lead to the creation of the storyboard. These separate outcomes may be independently published and disseminated, while the final storyboard is expected to form the basis of a feature film on Phalke.