Shapmochan enthralls audience at ShilpakalaMusfequr Rahman
Pallavi Dance Centre captivated a houseful audience on Friday, at the National Theatre Hall of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy, through a brilliant presentation of Tagore’s dance drama Shapmochan.
It was the troupe’s first staging of the dance drama for Dhaka audience. However, Shapmochan had its premiere at the Kamani Auditorium of the New Delhi based National School of Drama in India, on April 5 last year, as part of the joint Indo-Bangla celebration of Nobel laureate poet Rabindranath Tagore's sesquicentennial birth anniversary.
The local troupe’s presentation also got a warm response from the Delhi audience.
The enthralling presentation of Shapmochan focuses on two lovers - a beautiful princess named Kamolika and her beloved prince Aruneshwar, who has a repulsive face.
The story of the dance drama is unfolded through impressive dance style, magnificent facial expressions and refined body movements, synchronised to timeless Tagore songs including ‘Sedin dujone dulechhinu boney’, ‘Ei lobhinu songo tabo’, ‘Esho esho amar ghor-e’.
Choreographed by eminent classical dancer and choreographer, Minu Haque, the artistically rich dance drama portrayed the young Aruneshwar falling in love with Kamolika after seeing her portrait, through a group dance of six young girls in colourful attires, synchronised to the Tagore song ‘Bajibe shokhi bashi bajibe’.
These feelings remind the prince about the previous affairs between Sourosen and Madhusree, their first love in heaven, from where they were ousted to earth as punishment. On earth they took the names Aruneshwar and Kamolika, respectively.
After their marriage, without even seeing her beloved one, Kamolika was welcomed to the palace of Aruneshwar with the song ‘Esho esho amar ghore’ while he kept himself hidden from his fiancée with a thin white curtain, which created an illusionary ambience on stage.
But while Aruneswar partakes in a cheerful group dance synchronised to ‘Aji dakhino duar khola’, Kamolika, played by Kosture Mukherjee, encounters her husband, for the first time, sees his ugly face and cannot tolerate it.
She leaves him. The crisis in the love is portrayed with the song ‘Na jeyona go, Sakhi adhare ekela ghare’, and at the end Kamolika senses her true love for Aruneshwar and depicts her atonement on the empty stage with the song ‘Jokhon eshechile’, which touched the hearts of the audience.
Kosture Mukherjee as Kamolika and Anik Bose as Aruneshwar gave outstanding performances, presenting the deep sentiments and conflicting emotions in their respective roles.
The powerful and devotional performances of all the 17 artistes was the perfect blending of classical dances Kathak, Bharatnatyam and Odissi with contemporary dance styles all throughout the play. Simplicity was the most attractive part of the show, which avoided using props or arch-like shapes for presenting royal palaces, but instead made clever use of thin white curtain and native ornaments and fabrics.
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