KOCHI: After regaling theatre buffs with ‘Chayamukhi,’ a folk tale retold with contemporary relevance against the backdrop of the ‘Mahabharata’, actors Mohanlal and Mukesh are set to stage their second joint work ‘Naga’, the theatre adaptation of ‘Nagamandala’ by Girish Karnad, one of the foremost theatre personalities and actors in the country.
Unlike in the first work, Mohanlal, who played the lead role in ‘Chayamukhi’, has switched his position to behind the curtain this time as a narrator while Mukesh and his wife Methil Devika play the lead roles in the new play directed by Suveeran, a theatre artist and director of National Award Winning movie ‘Byari’. Sandhya Ranjendran, sister of Mukesh, Darshan and 23 other artists share the stage.
When ‘Express’ contacted Mukesh at the rehearsal camp of Kalidasa Kalakendram, established by O Madhavan, noted theatre director and father of Mukesh, he and the other artists were busy with the last-minute preparation for the play which will be staged for the first time at Kalady in Kochi on August 9.
‘’It was after a lot of discussion we chose to stage ‘Nagamandala’ written by Girish Karnad and director Suveeran played a pivotal role in selecting the play as it touches one of the most sensitive side of the marital life. The story is a heady combination of myth, superstition, fact and fantasy,’’said Mukesh.
“We are giving more thrust to creative acting in this work as it is capable of producing a magic impact on the stage and the play will be supported by techniques of shadow puppetry and lighting, ”the organisers said. The play revolves around the lives of a husband, his innocent wife, a concubine and a snake that has the ability to take form of a human being. It sheds lights on the emotional intricacies ofhuman life.
According to Suveeran, the theme of the play is a struggle for existence and it is a kind of fulfilment of one’s distressed and covert desires. The director who belives in fairy tales said in his director note that ‘acting’ is so much more real than life and he likes to belive in it. “When we contacted Karnad, he was very happy to hear the news that Kalidasa+ has selected his play to stage in Kerala,” said Mukesh. Music for the play was scored by Sreevalsan J Menon.