Source: Daily News
A novel drama "Paulina" based on a popular Chilean play will go on the boards at the Mayashakthi Theatre next week.
This drama directed by emerging dramatist Dharmajith Punarjeewa is based on " Death and the Maiden" by well-known dramatist Ariel Dorfman and focuses on contemporary social issues.
Dorfman's drama features the abductions, killings, political assassinations and abuses that occurred in Chile during the tenure of infamous Chilean dictator Augesto Pinochet. "His drama is woven around a middle-aged women named Paulina and discusses the numerous issues engulfing the society," Dharmajith says.
He said that drama relates well to the Sri Lankan society which is even today facing many social and cultural issues.
"Amidst peoples' continued struggle to adjust to a market driven society in an open economic system, the drama talks about the issues faced by people.
The cast includes four characters - Paulina played by Anoma Jinadari who won the Best Actress Award at the Singapore Film Festival, Anura de Silva plays Roberto and Samantha Wijesinghe plays Girardo.
"In a fast-changing and highly competitive system, the single unit called family faces all kind of clashes, difficulties and adversaries. This in turn has an impact on the society as a whole," added Dharmajith.
Dharmajith's drama underlines the theme of surviving in such a society while safeguarding the humanity. "The lack of humanity in contemporary society is a very vital factor affecting the progress of the society and this should be paid highest attention by everyone. Specially, artistes have a huge responsibility in this respect," he added.
Dharmajith's last play " Hiroshima " considered as an anti-war play was staged in 1997, followed by Yerma (an English production) in 1999. He won nine significant awards including the Best Play and Best Actor for his drama " Lihini " at the State Drama Festival in 1993.
However, Dharmajith was very critical of present-day dramatists. "There is no setback in the drama field, the setback falls on the part of those who create dramas. A dramatist should have a vision and present a creation that caters to the society." He stresses that dramatists should focus more on contemporary issues in their creations to make an impact on society.
"This is lacking in the drama circle today. We must pay more attention to issues and problems in contemporary society if we are to make dramas that appeal to the people." Dharmajith and his Mayashakthi Theatre has always taken up issues pertaining to contemporary society. "You must cater to the very same society that you are living in today," he noted.
The Sinhala translation of the drama is by Sagara Chandrasiri while music is by Schubert (Keith Anderson), choreography by Samarasiri Kandanage.
The drama will be staged at the Mayashakthi Theatre Nugegoda at 3.30 pm and 7.00 pm on September 13 and 14.