Manipur plans to use art to spread COVID awareness
In an attempt to spread awareness against COVID-19, the Manipur government has proposed the idea of using the popular form of theatre called 'Shumang Leela' or 'Shumang Kumhei' to reach out to people. It is a traditional form of theatre in Manipur which is performed in an open courtyard with spectators all around. All the characters, including women, are played by male actors.
A play titled 'Keidoubagi Kidoino' (There is no need to fear), directed by Sangeet Natak Akademi award winner Sougrakpam Hemanta is being planned to be staged to eliminate the misinformation on coronavirus.
Ranjit Ningthouja is the scriptwriter of the play and Padmashri awardee Wareppa Naba, the chairman of Academic Sub-Committee Manipur State Shumang Leela Council (MSSLC) is associated with the project as a consultant.
"The initiative is a collaboration of IPR, Health and Shumang Leela Council. While the IPR takes care of the productions, the health department and Leela Council fine-tune the script," said Balkrishna, Director of Information & Public Relations (IPR), adding that it is being produced by his department under the advice of Chief Minister N. Biren Singh.
Balkrishna said that the play is planned to be premiered by July 11 at the Shumang Leela Shangle, followed by its telecast through various digital media and also TV channels free of cost.
"The play will try to clarify concepts around COVID-19 and also highlight the initiatives undertaken by the government to combat the second wave of the pandemic," director Hemanta said.
The artists to perform in the play are S Hemanta, Dev Meitei, L Tomba Meitei, Yumnam Neelachandra, Athokpam Santosh, Dayananda Leishangthem, Thongam Heramoti, Langthabal Robindro and Deepson Pandum.
(Edited by Aparmita Das)
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