Cast & Crew

Playwright: Bratya Basu
Direction: Biplab Bandopadhyay
On Stage:  
Sujan : Rahul
Taranath :
Biswajit Chakraborty
Aloka : Suranjana Dasgupta
Mohit : Soumitra Mitra
Mohan : Manas Jana
Rina : Poulomi Basu
Jhimli : Abanti Dutta
Sanjay : Chandranath Roy
Hirak : Anirban Chatterjee
Satadal : Soumitra Chakraborty
Gopal : Sanjay Biswas
Peon: Tapan Dasgupta
Chorus : Pradip Hait & Others
Behind Stage:  
Light : Jay Sen
Makeup : Bidhatri Deb Sarkar
Sound : Swapan Bandyopadhayay
Set : Azahar Alam
Set Construction : Madan - Tinku
Music : Dishari
Costume : Malabika Mitra
Technical Assistance : Badal Das
Production Assistance : Arup Ratan Ganguly, Tarun Paul, Sushanta Das

Ashalin (The Slang)

I first tried my hand at play writing when I penned Ashaleen in 1995. Then I was only 25. It was first staged in 1996. Now I can hardly manage time to go through my early works and the same is true about Ashaleen. I even forgot a number of scenes and sequences of the play. At this matured age the play appears to me a bit overdone or quite melodramatic; one may even find traces of immaturity in treatment and presentation if viewed from the traditional concept of drama. Still I feel what I wanted to tell my audience in Ashaleen was the problem of miscommunication between two or some individuals, especially when we try our best to convey a thought process   through the medium of words or a sentence. Because, a sentence or a phrase for that matter often consists of words which are not always enough expressive and leads one to misunderstanding of a situation or someone else’s feelings. Perhaps that was the message or theme of Ashaleen.  

Besides, the play also dealt with the concept of the value system of a society, the idea or the problem of decent and indecent, the language of polish or the slang, the concept of subversive language or the notes from underground. Maybe someone is loud with a bad mouth. Then there are others who are polished in using words but indecent in acts and behavior. Some juvenile propensity in pure black and white of course is all I can now say about the play. But  that can’t be the language of art. However black and white the theme is, the language of a creative work always spreads its wing beyond the black and whites of daily chores.

Now after so many years Saumitra Mitra and his group Purba-Paschim have decided to stage the play once again and Shri Biplab Bandyopadhyay, a noted theatre personality of our time and my long time friend will direct it. They certainly have the right to come out with any production. But what I want to remind them is that the play was about communication or the lack of it. It was written at a time when mobile phone or email or internets were not popular but land phone was. The engaged tone of the land phone was a musical theme in our production. The communication gadgets have undergone a sea-change since. It is up to the director to take note of these developments. The task is quite complicated because the problem of communication remains same as it was in 1995 or 1996 but the gadgets are not.

I eagerly wait for the production to see if it can lead one to a certain direction like all good creative works does instead of leading us to a final conclusion in black and white.

Bratya Basu

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