Aranyak Natya Dal will premiere its play Swapnapothik featuring the struggles of the millions of apparel workers in the country today at the National Theatre Hall of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy.
Written by Haroon Rashid, the play is a creative and conscious response to the numerous tragic accidents that took place at different apparel factories like Rana Plaza, Tazreen and others in the past years. The play, however, will not focus on any such tragic incident that took lives of the poor workers. ‘Rather, it is a saga of their dreams of living a better life and also the stories of oppressions on the workers, whose hands move the wheel of economy of the country,’ playwright Haroon Rashid told New Age.
The play reveals the fact that there is no ‘potential’ chance for a change in the sector in terms of ensuring the due workers’ benefits and safety. Thus for the director of the play Mamunur Rashid it is a great challenge to compose the scenes as not just a strong message oriented ‘rough theatre’ but as an aesthetically rich theatre to touch the emotions of the audience.
‘My attempt is to create an artistic documentation on the “cruel facts” of life. It will be a tough production as it is a reflection on some recent bitter experiences. I find the work challenging and I hope the bunch of skilled young actors will make the production a successful one,’ said Mamunur Rashid, director of the play.
Both set and light designers, Faiz Zahir and Thandu Rahman respectively, plan to create suggestive sequences onstage to present the fact that the lives of the poor workers have been confined in a ‘frame’.
A number of 40 actors of Aranyak will act different characters, most of whom are apparel workers. This reporter on Wednesday evening found that all the actors were doing the last minute rehearsal for the play.
Actor Momena Chowdhury, who plays the role of an apparel worker said, ‘My character’s name is Jarina who has come to Dhaka from Jessore to work and support her family. But the cage devours her life, and her dreams as well,’ said Momena Chowdhury.
Noted artiste Tamalika Karmakar also enacts as an apparel worker named Radha. ‘All the characters are realistic characters in the play. I played a worker who ultimate dies under the rubble of a building collapse with her unfulfilled dreams,’ said Tamalika Karmakar.
-With New Age input