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HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times
Mumbai, November 28, 2012
The National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA) will host the third edition of its annual theatre festival, Centrestage, from December 6 to 16, in association with Ashvin Gidwani Productions. This year, 16 plays will be performed in a total of six languages by theatre troupes from Mumbai, Pune, Delhi and Bangalore and international theatre companies from the UK, US and Australia.

“Over the past few years, the Indian theatre scene has witnessed a metamorphosis and there is now a great demand for quality theatre,” said Khushroo N Suntook, chairman, NCPA. “Centrestage will try to tap into that demand and offer a wider variety this year.”

Centrestage invites theatre troupes to experiment with forms such as dance theatre, puppetry and plays in gibberish. This year, British dance theatre group Protein will combine complex movement with dialogue in LOL (Lots of Love), a story about love in the internet age.
From Australia, an experimental puppet theatre group Snuff Puppets will not only conduct a performance with Dharavi youth but will also have the audience build giant puppets.

A play called Bhopal, based on the Union Carbide gas tragedy, will be performed at the festival by a group from the US.
Closer home, actors Om Puri and Divya Dutta will star in a Punjabi translation of the Javed Siddiqui play Teri Amrita, a love story set in the time of Partition, told through letters spanning 35 years. Actor Naseeruddin Shah will also be one of the performers, starring in one of Samuel Beckett’s early novellas,
First Love.

From Bangalore, director Anil Abraham will showcase Gentlemen, a monologue-comedy full of sexual innuendo, said to be the male answer to the play Vagina Monologues.
The festival will host two workshops—one by playwright Anuvab Pal on writing for theatre, and one on set design by architect and set designer Rajan Bhise.