Theatre group Batighar staged the 28th show of its famous play "Radcliffe Line" at the Experimental Theatre Hall of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA) Wednesday. The play, written and directed by Sanjoy Sarker Muktonil, depicts how a political barrier divides individuals and dehumanises them. The plot revolves around an incident between two troops from Border Guard Bangladesh and Border Security Force of India, which portrays Jamal, a soldier of BGB and Hiralal, a BSF soldier, pursuing a cow grazing on no man's land. Hiralal discovers a tunnel beneath the border barrier while following the cow from separate sides of the Radcliffe Line. Inside, Jamal and Hiralal confront each other and soon start fighting. After hours of combat, the exhausted soldiers engage in a conversation and realise how similar their lives are. They discuss their history, their feelings for their families, and other topics. Through the conversation, the soldiers become aware that they have been dehumanised by a phantom line that has robbed them of their humanity. However, just before the two soldiers are about to dissolve their illogical animosity, an unknown assailant kills them both with long-range shots. The lead characters of the play were performed by Khalid Hasan Rumi, Sharan Biswas, Shishir Sarkar, and Sanjay Halder. Despite being staged on a regular working day, the hall was full of theatre enthusiast audiences who lauded the frequent, witty conversations between the characters, as well as their skilled acting. Radcliffe Line was first staged on July 27, 2018, at the Studio Theatre Hall of the BSA.
Scenic reading of the two contemporary German plays translated into Bangla have been held at the Bangladesh Mohila Samity in the capital. While welcoming the audience during her inaugural speech on Sunday evening, Dr Kirsten Hackenbroch, Director, Goethe-Institut Bangladesh highlighted the significance of the project titled “Contemporary German drama in South Asian Languages” to the local theatre scene. This project aims to familiarize contemporary German plays to the South Asian local theatre scene and audiences alike. This project has been launched by Goethe-Institut Mumbai in 2020, focusing on the selection of plays, as well as identifying qualified German to local language translators at the initial stage. Afterward, 46 translations were produced out of 20 German plays. Some of these plays were translated by just one person, others by several; altogether they were translated into six languages: Bangla, Hindi, Marathi, Sinhalese, Tamil, and Urdu. According to the Goethe-Institut Bangladesh, contemporary German-language drama is characterized by enormous variety. It has long been and continues to be shaped by both a rich tradition and significant international influences. Many playscripts written in German are known to audiences in Asia primarily through their English translations. It would of course be far preferable to present these plays to the public in Asian languages – in translations carried out by competent translators working directly from the German. This would also make it possible for theatre companies who operate in local languages to familiarize themselves with the current German theatre scene, according to the institution. Read: Dhaka Theatre’s new play opens with metaphoric presentation on ‘virus’ Those reflections are what gave rise to the project: contemporary German-language drama in six South Asian languages – Bangla, Hindi, Marathi, Sinhalese, Tamil, and Urdu. These translations are intended first and foremost to be used within India, but will also be available to other Goethe-Instituts in Dhaka (Bangla), Colombo (Tamil and Sinhalese) and Karachi (Urdu), and in principle to Goethe Centres and additional theatre companies throughout South Asia. On Sunday evening, Prachyanat staged the scenic reading of the German play titled “DER ZINNSOLDAT UND DIE PAPIERTÄNZERIN” by Roland Schimmelpfennig. Romit Roy translated this play into Bangla. Directed by Kazi Toufikul Islam Emon, the play featured performances by Diana Meriline, Urmi Saha Ray, Farhad Ahmed Shamim, AKM Itmam, Abdulla Mohammad Sakib, Prajna Tasnuva Rubayyat, Tanji Kun, Yead Khorshid Eashan, Swatee Bhadra, Gopi Devnath, Supti Das Chaity, Nahida Akhter Akhi, Ucchas Talukder, Mohammad Abu Imran, and Audree Ja. Social organization Bonhishikha staged the scenic reading of the German play titled “ICH LIEB DICH“ (ভালোবাসি) by Kristo Šagor on Monday evening. Parthapratim Chattopadhyay translated this play into Bangla. Directed by Shararat Islam, the two-person scenic reading was performed by Shararat Islam and Samina Yasmin, narrating different roles. Followed by around 50 minutes of scenic reading, a panel discussion moderated by Syeda Samara Mortada was held. Sanjida Anwar Preety, Actor, Prachyanat Theatre Troupe and Samina Luthfa, Associate Professor, Dhaka University and Playwright and Actor, theatre troupe Bottala, were among the panellists.