November 24, 2018 | Goregaon Sports Club Grounds, Mumbai | 7:30 pm | Free Entry (accompanied by member) + MahaPrasad
80 Minutes | 28 Actors | 200+ crew | A team GSC GenNext initiative
Remember those times when you flocked the Ram Leela Grounds to get a glimpse of the RAMAYAN play during Navratri? Every ’80s and ’90s kid would remember climbing on their father’s shoulders to get a better glimpse of the burning Ravana on the 10th day. Those were days full of fun and every kid knew the RAMAYAN thanks to the Ram Leela and the television show that etched the learnings in everyone’s heart irrespective of race, religion, caste or creed.
However, today’s young generation needs to be told about the great epic and its teachings.
“We live in a digital age today; our culture and traditions have got buried somewhere deep within the materialism and increased exposure to the western world. Quite an irony because the west is turning towards Indian traditions for peace of mind. We thought of presenting the greatest epic to today’s generation, in a format that they would love and understand. Thus, we came up with the concept of LIVE RAMAYAN – depicted in 80 minutes.” Said JD Majethia who heads HatsOff Productions and is also the cultural head of GSC, responsible for several new culture-related ideas being implemented at the club.
There is an army of 150 members from HatsOff Productions that stands behind the vision.
“Over the past 2 years, team GenNext has been doing a great job in uplifting the club through various community-building sports and cultural activities. When our outdoor chairman, Rishi Kedia came up with this idea, the management supported him wholeheartedly. From the club’s end over 75 members are working to put up the show. Never has any club executed this kind of concept on such a grand scale for the benefit of the members and society. We are blessed with fantastic team members in GenNext whose motto has never been glory or vested interests. exclaimed a happy Nigam Patel, Hon. Secretary, Goregaon Sports Club.
The actors will perform on a 42 feet stage with multiple platforms at the GSC ground – giving it an old school Ram-Leela maidan feel. At the same time, the visual experience will be like watching a film in an open-air theatre.
“The idea is to use new-age technology like surround sound, great music, fantastic narration, story-telling through LED screen, smoke and light effects to tell a story that inherently contains magical moments. The actors will be performing among this massive set up and will take the audience to another world with their performances. While telling the story, we have taken special care to keep the message & story intact. The narrative is gripping and easy for anyone to understand – thus giving it a universal appeal.” Says Parth Shukla, Director, RAMAYAN from team HatsOff production. Parth is ably supported by Associate Director, Tejas Parekh along with assistants Pawan Patel & Rushab Chotalia.
The story & screenplay have been written by Parth Shukla and the dialogues have been penned by Nayan Shukla.
The show has been produced by the Goregaon Sports Club & will be enacted by the club members who have been toiling day and night to put up a stellar show.
Here is a sneak peek of the rehearsals.
Sunil Singhania, President of GSC happily gushed, “When we announced the auditions, we were pleasantly surprised to get an eclectic mix of actors and non-actors for the play. The range is so wide, we have one performer from National School of Drama, one TV star and 3 theatre artistes at the same time, we have 23 performers whose hidden talents have been discovered by JD’s team and polished to perfection. The member’s enthusiasm has been overwhelming. The concept of the live RAMAYAN play will not only benefit GSC members but also the world at large.”
Rishi Kedia, GSC’s outdoor chairman has been working hard with his team to ensure that the show is perfect. “JD’s team took a series of auditions and then trained the cast for the stage. The team is working very hard to put up the entire show. We are so proud of our members who put aside their personal commitments and made this play a mission. Each of them is driven by a great passion and zeal to pass on the learnings to the next generation. The set-up and presentation is a perfect blend of modern technology with age-old wisdom. We are hoping that the audience enjoys the show and leaves with their lives enriched through the learnings of RAMAYAN.” Said Rishi.
DiaryOfAnInsaneWriter asked JD Majethia: Such a great show, so many non-actors in the cast. Doesn’t it worry you?
JD smiled and replied, “Working with a mix of actors and non-actors was a challenge that my team and I took upon ourselves. We wanted to ensure that the club members take a break from their daily routine and do something that will bring them closer to their roots. At the same time, we wanted to put up a show that would be record-breaking in its presentation. The cause is noble, and the passion of the actors and crew is in place, we are positive we will achieve this.”
We wanted to ensure that the club members take a break from their daily routine and do something that will bring them closer to their roots. said JD Majethia.
Why does this news find a place in DiaryOfAnInsaneWriter?
You just read about everything the play has to offer to the world. But for my family and me, it has done all this and much more.
Well, my husband plays Rishi Vashith and Jamvan, my son plays young Ram and I play the demonic Suparnaka!
To us, it has been an amazing personal journey that taught us the discipline, nuances of body language, teamwork, dialogue delivery among other things. We underwent a great journey of self-discovery while relearning the great epic.
Our lives have CHANGED and HOW!
Almost every night my 13-year-old narrates a story to his 5-year-old sister. Since the time we started practice, the bedtime stories with Peppa Pig and Doraemon have been replaced by stories about:
- A boy who had three little brothers and he took care of them always
- A boy who always loved his family left everything and went to the jungle
- A brave brother who protected his sister when someone cut her nose
- A monkey friend who did everything to save his friend’s wife from a demon
He ends his stories with how evil people are always punished. It is important to be good and not be selfish.
Personally, I am very happy that Indian culture and tradition are being upheld by this effort.
If you are at Malad on November 24, you #MUSTATTEND the LIVE RAMAYAN at Goregaon Sports Club at 7:30 pm. The entry is free (accompanied by GSC member) and will be followed by Mahaprasad.
Which are the prominent learnings from RAMAYAN that have affected your life positively? Let me know!
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