'Chaaya,' a play on wheelchairs, staged in Kochi

'Chaaya,' a play on wheelchairs, staged in Kochi
Jayasurya on stage with 'chaya' team.

Kochi: A special drama was staged at Town Hall here this week. Each of the actors arrived on wheelchairs, but when the play began, their performance was so perfect that the audience hardly noticed the locomotor aids.

The first play on wheelchairs titled 'Chaaya' was organized by Suvarna Theatres, Valayanchirangara. All the actors of the drama were differently abled people. Nine such persons, by demonstrating their acting prowess, apt expressions and perfect dialogue delivery on stage, reflected the odds they overcame in their own lives. The performance indeed thrilled the audience.

Actor Jayasurya and wife Saritha lit the lamp marking the first performance of the play, which was staged with the cooperation of Cochin Shipyard.

'Chaaya' deals with the life of an artist and the mental conflict he undergoes. Presented with a tinge of humour, the play was greeted by the audience with a loud applause.

The play was written and directed by V T Ratheesh, who has been active in the rural amateur theatre scene over the last 15 years. N M Rajesh, secretary of Suvarna Theatres, had suggested the idea of the unique drama to provide a stage for ‘Thanal freedom on wheels’, a music group of wheelchair-bound artists.

The actors who gave life to the characters on stage were Sarat Padippura, Martin Nettoor, Unni Max, Jomet Madakkathanam, Sunil Muvattupuzha, Saji Vagamon, Biju V Thankappan, Dhanya Gopinath and Anju Rani. According to the actors, their intention was to display their talents rather than highlighting the problems they faced.

The organisers now hope to present the play on other stages in the country and abroad.

The stage arrangements were done by R L V Ajay and Anoop Pune, while the costumes were designed by Yakob Allapra.

An inaugural function was held before the staging of the play. District Collector Muhammed Safirulla, actor Vishnu Unnikrishnan, actor-director Sohan Seenulal and Dr R Geeta Devi spoke.

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