The play is directed by Thirunavakkarasu and is a tribute to Girish Karnad and BV Karanth
“This is the time of revival of the theatre after the lockdown. It is a very important phase and I am glad to be a part of it,” says Jayashree Murthy, founder of Sthaayi Theatre, Coimbatore. The organisation is coming up with its latest Tamil satirical play, Hayavadana directed by Thirunavakkarasu in the city. The play was originally written by Girish Karnad in Kannada and the plot is inspired by Kathasaritsagara and Thomas Mann’s retelling of Transposed Heads.
Hayavadana runs for 90 minutes and tells the story of two friends Kapila and Devdutta and their love interest, Padmini. Jayashree says, “Hayavathana was originally in Kannada and was first staged in New Delhi in 1971. Karnad gave me permission to stage it in Tamil just a few days before he passed away in 2019. Though I planned to do it in 2020, the pandemic delayed it. Now, this is my tribute to both Karnad and BV Karanth, who have contributed a lot to the Kannada theatre.”
She agrees that Hayavadana is her most challenging production so far. “It is my first time working with a production with so much importance given to Tamil folktales.”
The lead roles are played by Shivaganesh, Mohana Gowtham, Hema Manobhaskar and Koverthani. “Most of the actors have done one or two plays earlier. So it was not very difficult for them to get to the characters.” This is the fourth play for adults by Staayi Theatre. The others include The Threepenny Opera by Bertolt Brecht, As You Like It by William Shakespeare and The Miser by Molière. “I have also done more than 50 plays for kids and cannot wait to see Hayavathana unfold on stage,” she concludes.
The play is on March 26 and 27; 7 pm at Vidhya Niketan Public School, Vilankuruchi, Coimbatore. Ticket rate is ₹300. Call 9244412401 for details.