workshop theatre

Workshop Theatre

Workshop theatre is the form in which  pandies specialises. And pandies has made many innovations and additions to this form, that revolutionise not just this form but the very notion of theatre itself. Pandies has used the workshop mode to consistently create theatre with people in the margins - individual survivors and underserved communities; in villages and slums; incarcerated in prisons, reformatories and shelters. An enabling form it is aimed at making the participants narrate their stories and create performances from these stories. The idea is to create zones where participants and facilitators both become and development is on all sides of the spectrum. Pandies combines many ingredients of western methodologies with Eastern modes to come with a unique comprehensive workshop method. There is Stanislavsky, Brecht and of course Augusto Boal, and there is also use of the sutradhar (Bibek) tradition and Dastan goi modes of narration apart from the obvious influence of folk traditions of playing and singing (tamasha and Jatra to name just two). As compared to western methods (specially Boal), the pandies mode is a highly flexible mode and concentrates a lot on narration methods and building the trust of the participants as they aren’t usually given that trust and their stories are seldom articulated, much less heard. The mode challenges policy thrusts and mainstreaming developmental methodologies going back to the Brazilian Paulo Freire’s assertion that the dominant section cannot formulate the development of the margins without the active participation of the margins.

1. Shaktishalini

Pandies connection with Shakti Shalini is the oldest and possibly the deepest of ties among like minded organisations. Establishing itself as a premier women’s organisation, Shaktishalini has spread out and deals with all kinds of gender based violence. Pandies and Shakti Shalini - different in terms of the work they do but firmly aligned in terms of ideological beliefs and where they stand and speak from. Read more:    pandies and Shaktishalini

Shaktishalini (pics)

2. Saksham, Nithari

Pandies sustained foray into workshop theatre which (along with the cutting edge work with 'platform kids' - young runaway boys) put pandies workshop theatre on an international map drawing accolades not only for the work but for the methodology. Evolving the form, pandies has been there at Saksham School from 2006. Read more:   Nithari

Nithari (pics)

3. Platform Children  

The most dangerous and the most challenging foray attempted by pandies in workshop theatre. The work with platform children has been necessarily sporadic, these performances have not been "performed." There have been few public proscenium performances as often the involved NGOs and the Police have baulked on seeing the raw, critical content of the plays created. Read more:   Platform

Platform Children (pics)

4. Theatre in Kashmir, Jammu and Ladakh

Pandies has been doing the impossible, doing theatre in one of the hottest, continuous conflict torn zones in the world, Kashmir. Extremely challenging and almost incredible. And pandies has been doing it with the warring communities, the Kashmiri Muslims and Kashmir Pandits together.  Read more:

Workshopping in Kashmir

Kashmir (pics)

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