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Bibhaban|Kolkata The Experimental Theatre Company


There you are‌ by Supriyo Samajdar Falling in love is a means to feeling time. Does age matter? Sometime the questions are not so important , may be the reality of a relationship is also not so important , may be the important thing is the feelings you experience for someone or inversely, someone feels for you so you feel for her. An exchange of emotions, the emotion where you moved, where silence can express more than words , where you are not alone - beside you there is a thinker , who is thinking about you and your emotions. We talk about trust when we are in a relation - the trust that we need to understand thoughts, the place from where we communicate. Sometimes the word communication is difficult to understand because the meaning of a word is not as given in a dictionary , it changes with the way you exist, in your presence, that is when you question the definition with your own thoughts you find something which is new, which may be a different meaning or even a search for meaning. Talking about trust, the word first talks about believing in a person and to believe in someone is not an easy task; it takes time. If you want to move with someone whom you love then what is the thing that moves you behind the word trust? For me it’s the struggle to see myself , my source from where I am thinking about love , for that particular person. What exactly gives you the feelings that you are in love, what are you seeking from that relation? To look into myself there sometimes I found that my sexuality and my way of understanding love is not the same. To love someone is to understand their movement , their silences, their words. Sexuality is something with my being, my body, my pleasure , my pain. Few years back , when I tried to express my confessions towards my work through the form of theatre , I felt that there was a problem with my approach, rather I would like to say it creates confusion. Sometime I am asked by the participants what is sex for me? For me it is a communication. Beyond sexual pleasure , there is also a human being who even in those very particular feelings tries to unmask his/her social condition. So


when they associate themselves with the ‘Journey’ they come to a point where they find their art is living. The work they want to do with this form is more challenging because you have to build new thought and you have to first decondition the thoughts which are in your body and mind given to you by society. Looking at something seriously means you are with it consciously through your knowledge, with your understanding of things; the very presence of your being as you are. It is important to give others your presence, to truly understand a moment. There are a few articles about my work , which are written in different phases of my understanding of work, in terms of my own views on those article I found that the thoughts which I want to express in those articles are the feelings of being with a form which I loved . I try to find what moves me in my relation with theatre. Through this search movement changes, my way of looking at things changes, I myself change, my understanding of emotions change. When I started doing theatre, I wanted to do this , because it gave me another identity to know me in another context. May be I am also looking for the space where I can do something new. I don’t know , that is I can’t define the space, I was searching. Perhaps every man wants something which he does not know but when he asks himself what he loves in a relation , what is the first thing he likes , that he moves towards , what will he say ? Sometimes there are no answers; or maybe there are but they are a little difficult to put into words, while you are in that relationship. So today , when I try to write about 19 years old relationships with art , I have experienced a lot, being an alternative theatre activist the journey was not always easy , there were problems; but it still goes on with new situations, new people and new emotions. There you are, with your love, your presence. In every public presentation of Journey lots of things happen; it is a space where my emotions are guided by friends. In the presentation some things are defined but mostly I try to create a space where audiences feel a relationship beyond that of audience and a performer and instead think about their existence as a human beings. Sometime I am told by friends , who are close to Journey that, this day’s presentation was good or that day’s presentation was not good. Why does this happen – the answer lies within them. For me I feel that every time when I am in the space for the presentation, I try to be there with my presence and my


concentration while I consider the time and the work. So I tell them that for me there is something in Journey and Open Theatre and what I feel may not be felt by them, our needs are different, so they see the work for their needs and expectations, my own needs and expectations are different. If you are a visitor , your observation is to know from the outside with your own knowledge but if you are living there then something else happens. And that is within you, everyday there is change- relationships change , time changes; you have to feel them , at the same time you are also changing. It shows in our presentation, and so there in the judgment of not good or good. It is you who is in this Journey , and it is you who feels good or not good. The audience is not, they think differently. After all while living your life there are misunderstandings , but yes, there is love and that is why you are in this Journey; and that is important. When talking about Open Theatre form, there is no meaning in terms of other forms of theatre. Mostly , people know about proscenium form and other forms like, Open Air Form, Intimate Form ,where mass acceptance is less than proscenium . There are many senior theatre workers who do lots of research to find communication in alternative approaches. Some have been appreciated for their works, some have been forgotten, so if we are thinking about appreciation of form then it’s different, because appreciation brings expectation , where there is something you want from it. When you start planning , you are thinking about structure which is based on your experience and there you expect respect, that it must communicate successfully. So your experiments are within an expectation and here is when you are going along with society , and its way of thinking. Society which is conditioned by the politics of power , money, sex .And when you questions this system, you shouldn’t expect appreciation , because society is based on human beliefs , faith and knowledge; human life. When you exist as an individual you question all of this disagreements and separation follows for individuals who are thinking. And finally comes silence, the truth of the moment , from where the condition of thoughts change and so we and our vision changes. Open Theatre form is something which tries to work on individuals and it moves from their interaction of thoughts. The Journey where every day you feel with your existence, where you and your partner search for the meaning of relationships and togetherness. In that hope may be someday this love can


be communicated, so we live life happily with our own way. Open Theatre starts from an individual , their way of thinking towards life. Our work wants to move with an alternative way of living and raise questions , which our civil society does not allow because the system does not want any questions about its work. When you are questioning, there is theatre, art. Training and workshop are two different things. In training one has to know the technique to perform a particular action repeatedly , from the beginning it is a practice of the same action to discover your ability , concentration, learning. Mostly in theatre groups there are two kinds of training – physical and vocal. As an actor these two elements are important to express their emotions in performance, but if you are doing not only a typical performance but something beyond it then what its training? What is beyond typical performance? Open Theatre deals with the human being mostly. Any actor can join our training but we want know why they pursue this craft, that is what are they looking for? Why did they choose acting for their expression? Who is the person, who wants to act? We try to work on that person. There is no physical or vocal training as other groups use. In our training we try to explore that very human being who has chosen this path of art. Normally we work once in a week but sometimes it changes. We do meditation and open discussion, with the trainee we try to understand their need. In this work two things happen, through that person, we also try to understand their needs but also a relationship is developed in any kind of creation, so we try to focus on that also in our training. However when we do workshops about our work , due to time constraints we work on some basic ideals of our work from where a participant can realize the process. I have had the pleasure of working with many theatre directors throughout my journey , I have tried to understand their way of thinking towards their art. Somehow I feel that few of them are doing their work to build something mechanically from the outside. They believe in one thing and do another. Some of them are working with typical structured performance and some of them ‘beyond performance’ that is performance which breaks down audience – performer divider but truth is they are following some structure , which are based on other’s work. Meaning they think they are doing something new but the problem is


that this is only in thought. It is generally known collaboration is needed, otherwise it cannot be called art. “My work is inspired from a number of sources, I use those elements with a new meaning but it was not invented by me.” This truth is very easy to accept for us who are in this art form. But this truth is missing from their relationship with art. Some directors claim that there is a process which they use to understand their living with art but what they convey in words their thought runs in opposite directions. To me they look like they are in a crisis as if someone is chasing them to take something or I find them egoistic about their work. After all there is a human being behind all this, who is this person? Perhaps you are a great director, may be internationally acclaimed, so what? Where is your work and you? Open Theatre tries to raise these questions –where am I and from where I am thinking about my art so the training in our workshops is finding a belief through which one can know that one is discovering oneself. Acknowledgement : Greeny Francis

Communication: Bibhaban - 37 Baguiati 4th lane,Kolkata – 700028, India Email: bibhaban@hotmail.com Phone: 09830034978


Supriyo Samajdar is director.He Born in 1969 in India. Theatre director and practicioner. Studied directing at the Rabindra Bharati University in Kolkata. Worked with many acclaimed artists: theatre directors Salil Sarakar, Probir Guha, Raul Iaiza, Abani Biswas, actress Rena Mirecka, dancers Ranjabati Sarkar, Tripura Kashyap ,baul singers Paban Das Baul, Parvathy Baul and others. Founded Bibhaban, an experimental theatre company in 1996 and has been directing, writing plays and leading it since. Since 2002 Samajdar is running his research project on mukta natya (open theatre), exploring the communication between a spectator and a performer,Through this resarch work presently he is working on a project calledApproach To Silence, inspired by the works of Antonin Artuad and Jerzy Grotowski. He participated as a director in Regula contra Regulam, research project of Teatro La Madrugada, in Brzezinka (Poland) in 2008.His research paper" in search of a new form -open theatre" was selected for a international symposium-“Language(s) of Theatre”, organized by Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi and the Indian Society for Theatre Research (ISTR).at the Jawaharal Nehru University in Delhi(India) in january 2009, "Grotowski - Alongside - Around - Ahead" at the University of Kent in Canterbury(England) in june 2009 and selected at the “Indian Drama in the Culture of Occident” International Conference organized a by Department of Drama and Theatre University of Lodz( Poland) in March, 2011.


There You Are by by Supriyo Samajdar