Malayalam play “LAKSHADEEPAM” staged on Clubhouse
‘Clubhouse,’ the audio-only social network, seems to have taken Kerala by storm. Though it has been available in Apple’s iOS platform for about a year, its release in Android phones last week has led to an explosion in the number of users from the State. The invitation-only, audio-only app is emerging as a popular space to host events, discussions and a lot more ever since its launch early this month. A group of theatre persons in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, recently staged a play “Lakshadeepam” based around the current controversy
over the Union Territory of Lakshadweep following a slew of reforms announced by newly-appointed Administrator Praful Patel.
The first ever Malayalam play to be staged on the audio-only app, Lakshadeepam written and directed by Hazim Amaravila of Thiruvananthapuram-based Kanal Samskarika Vedhi is a 25-minute production that has four characters, played by Kannan Nayar, Santhosh Venjaramoodu, Anand Manmadhan and Amal Krishna. The action is set in a newsroom with a news anchor and a political analyst, both supporters of the Government, voicing their opinions. They are interrupted by two voices from the island, who talk about their plight. The other two are unable to stop them.
“We are trying to incorporate music as well just like you have it in radio plays. Theatre artistes are going through a tough time with shows being cancelled. So we are always on the lookout for spaces to perform. Although we are not physically together, we keep having fruitful discussions via phones and digital platforms,” says Hazim.
Kanal was formed in 2008 by the alumni association of the Centre for Performing and Visual Arts, University of Kerala. Among the major productions of the group are Veendum Bhagavante Maranam, Chimera, Swarnasimhasanam, Kimartham Draupadi and Keni. The troupe was working on its new production when the second wave of pandemic stalled the project.