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Works of Anton Chekhov and O’ Henry staged as play at Gaiety Theater Shimla

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Himachal Theater Artist

SHIMLA- Last week, on August 12-13, people in Shimla city got an opportunity to witness stories of two great writers, Anton Chekhov and O’ Henry, in the form of a play staged by Muskan – a trust for children education at the historic Gaiety Theater.

The play compiled of three different short stories- The Lady’s Story, Love, and The Last Leaf. Each story has a vast potential and is too promising for any literature lover.

Theater Atists

Muskan group gave a personal touch to each story and adapted it to make it more of phari culture or should say native tale.

The first story Navya based on The Lady’s story which is a tale of lamenting the passing of youth by allowing rank and wealth to come between her and the man which she very well might have loved. Natalya Vladimirovna real character realizes years later that she has wasted her life and says in original script I only have regrets. The story had a great potential and could have been executed in much better way. Navya instead of looking like some famous respectable dancer seemed more like cheap dancers in the initial appearance until she shares her story.

Shimla Gaiety Theater

She is seen dancing with her beloved singing and he is playing flute in one of the flashback scene but the background did not even had a note of that instrument. The only expression the protagonist gave was raising and spreading her arms. Numerous times it seemed she was taking to the corners of the stage as she hardly has a straight look at the spectators.

Coming to second story Love – Showed feelings of a fussy young man who falls in love with a girl. The original script concludes

. . . I remember in my old Lovelace days I have cast off women for a stain on their stockings, or for one foolish word, or for not cleaning their teeth, and now I forgive everything: the munching, the muddling about after the corkscrew, the slovenliness, the long talking about nothing that matters; I forgive it all almost unconsciously, with no effort of will, as though Sasha’s mistakes were my mistakes, and many things which would have made me wince in old days move me to tenderness and even rapture. The explanation of this forgiveness of everything lies in my love for Sasha, but what is the explanation of the love itself, I really don’t know.

The story was very soft and clean and it showed how love can change all and there is nothing more important than the happiness of loved one. The execution of story was average as there is always scope for improvement.

Shimla Theater

Last but not the least, The last leaf – a story of two female roommates and aspiring artists who live in Greenwich village. One of them, Johnsy, fells ill with pneumonia, and the doctor doesn’t give her much of a chance. Johnsy’s roommate, Sue, keeps watch over her and notices her counting. She asks why, and Johnsy replies that she is counting the

Leaves on the ivy vine. When the last one falls, [Johnsy] must go, too.

Soon, there is only one leaf on the vine, and Sue is in despair that it will fall, and Johnsy will die. She expresses her fears to the unconventional and often grumpy old man that lives downstairs, Mr Behrman. He comes up and sits with her for a while. The next morning, Sue opens the blinds to find the leaf still there, and Johnsy recovers. Later it is revealed that it was painted there by Behrman, who then, from exposure to Johnsy, and the cold, died of pneumonia at the old age of 60 years old.

Gaiety Theater Shimla

The beautiful story got a Midas’ touch exactly the way king’s food got that is it became useless to satisfy the hunger. The play has complete phari touch man in local dress but the introductory music is western country song.

Unnecessary character is introduced as an artist who has nothing important to do other than add length to the play and have comic element with the local shopkeeper and photographer than the main old artist who dies in pursuit to save girl’s life.

The sister has a very casual approach towards the sick girl and the most miss match feature was a stranger who comes and later is informed to be a medical student. His appearance was that of a hippy and more apt to say that of a drug addicts looking for weeds in the hills. The comic element was no doubt good and made the story light by breaking the monotony and flat execution.

The soul of all stories was ripped out brutally with so much experimentation. In an attempt to shroud the tales with local veil team went way too beyond.

Art & Culture

Wah Re Corona: Himachali Folk Artist’s Lyrical Satire is Factual Rendition of India’s Agonizing Catastrophe

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wah re corona

Shimla-Otherwise blatantly vocal and distinctively mass-mobilizing government of India is suddenly in the most subdued self after its proclaimed victory over the deathly virus; participation in uncontrolled election rallies; and permitting maha melas. The stalwarts are in the hiding, while helpless citizens – who voted them into power not once but in landslide victories twice – are dying due to lack of oxygen, poor – unavailable – medical facilities, and the denial stance of the ignorant in the helm.

Drawing a comparison between the fatal coronavirus and the mismanagement of the entire situation by the appalling government; a Himachali folk artist has released a factually appropriate lyrical satire that will tickle your mind and leave you to imagine what has brought this catastrophe onto us. The song is written by Rameshwar Sharma and music by Lalit Sauta. 

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Art & Culture

International Mandi Shivratri Fair Begins in Presence of 150 Local Dieties

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mandi maha shivratri 2021 pics

Mandi-International Shivratri Fair of Mandi district on the occasion of Mahashivratri began on March 12, 2020, at the historic Paddal ground. While Mahashivratri is celebrated for one day in most parts, the fair in Mandi goes on for seven days.

After Pagri and worship ceremony at Raj Madhav Rai Temple – abode of principal deity Madho Rai- begun the taditional Jaleb, Shobha Yatra. This yatra is held on every every year on the occasion of Mahashivratri. It starts from Raj Madhav Rai temple to conclude at the Paddal ground. This year, over 150 deities participated in the ‘Jaleb’, the traditional Shobha Yatra from almost all parts of the district. A total of over 200 deities have been invited this year.  

Mandi shivratri pictures 2021

Picture Courtesy: JairamThakur/Twitter

Thousands of people dressed in their traditional attire participated in the procession carrying their local deities dancing all the way upto Paddal ground.

Deputy Commissioner Mandi and Chairman International Shivratri Fair Organizing Committee Rugved Thakur informed this year as many as 216 deities were invited to participate in this fair.
He said that awareness Rath has also been included in the procession to drive in the theme of Beti Bachao-Beti Padhao. It was followed by the performances by pahari artists on the first night of the fair.

An increase of five percent in honorarium of Bajantries accompanying the deities was also announced.

Chief minister Jairam Thakur also participated in the Yatra and Puja (worship). The state government is celebrating the festival as Swarnim International Shivratri Fair to mark fifty years of Statehood.

Though the Chief Minister cautioned the people that the world hasn’t come out of corona pandemic and there is a need to be cautious, he himself participated in the fair without wearing a mask or taking any visible measures for social distancing. From the crowd, some people were also heard asking the Chief Minister where his mask was . 

CM Jairam Thakur not wearing mask

He said that fortunately, the number of covid-19 cases were declining constantly, which was a big sigh of relief. 

Chief Minister couldn’t resist taking the opportunity to speak about his government’s achievements on the this occasion. “Three years tenure of the State Government has been full of achievements and accomplishments,” he said.

“This year the Mandi Shivrati has gained more importance as it was being celebrated this year when the Nagar Parishad has been upgraded to Municipal Corporation,” Jai Ram Thakur said.

Further, various Departments, Boards and Corporation have set up exhibition at Paddal Ground.

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Art & Culture

Amid Steep Rise in COVID-19 Cases, HP Govt to Open Temples/Religious Places from Sept 10

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Chaurasi-Temple-photo

Shimla- The total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Himachal Pradesh had reached 6830 by September 4, 2020. Yesterday the State reported 215 new positive cases with two deaths. The COVID-19 death tally rose to 48 with these new casualties reported from Sirmaur and Kangra districts.

According to the yesterday’s COVID-19 bulletin released by the State Health Department, highest 37 cases were reported in Kangra district followed by Solan (35) Sirmaur (33), Chamba (33), Mandi (32), Una (20), Bilaspur (7), Hamirpur (7), Shimla (8), and Kullu (3). Till Friday evening, the number of active cases in the state was 1815 as 4920 persons had recovered.

HP Health Department’s COVID-19 Bulletin for August 4, 2020 ( 9 PM)

temples-opening-in-himachal-pradesh

Amid this steep rise in cases in Himachal, the State Government on Friday held a Cabinet meeting in which it decided to open temples and religious places from September 10.

 The Language, Art and Culture Department will prepare SOP in this regard.  Registration would be required for people entering the State till September 15. The quarantine requirement would be reduced from 14 days to 10 days. The District Administration would strictly enforce the use of masks and social distancing in the field, the government said.

The Cabinet decided to provide wheat flour and rice to the income tax payee APL Consumers under Public Distribution System as was being provided to them earlier on APL rates and provide them pulses, edible oil, salt and sugar on zero-subsidy on actual rates.

The State Cabinet decided to request the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Government of India to sign Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) related to Affordable Rental Housing Complexes Scheme with the state government.

It decided to fill up 10 posts of class IV employees in Panchayati Raj Department.

It gave its approval to transfer Gram Panchayat Kot from Police Station Shimla East (Chhota Shimla) to Police Station West (Boileauganj)  in district Shimla to facilitate the people.

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