Mime artists enthral people in Jaipur | india | Hindustan Times
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Mime artists enthral people in Jaipur

Not many of us would have watched "Mukhabinaya" (or, mime theatre) but this art of gestures is one of the most ancient and difficult art forms in theatre.

india Updated: Mar 13, 2006 11:47 IST

Not many of us would have watched "Mukhabinaya" (or, mime theatre) but this art of gestures is one of the most ancient and difficult art forms in theatre. Its prevalence could be traced to the earliest annals of our cultural heritage. Recently, a first-ever national Mime festival was organised in Jaipur.

The captivating presentations by artists on themes like Traffic Police, Doll Show, Computer chat and Life of a Stranger in Mumbai enthralled the audience at Jawahar Kala Kendra auditorium here.

The festival was intended to create awareness among people on the potential of Mime theatre art form and give the audience real entertainment. "Mukhabhinaya" transcends all language barriers. It conveys things through gestures.

"Mime is generally known as acting without words, which has got very vast meaning," said Y. Sadanand Singh, Mime Director.

In "Mukabhinaya'", it is the actions that speaks louder than any word as the Mime theatre art is all about performing through silent gestures. Various gestures as curling of lips, enlargement of eyelids in the rage of temper and many other expressions are used to narrate things.

As the trend to revisit the cultural heritage and exploring the traditional aspects of life old ritual is becoming popular among the youth, the Mime artists believe that the future appears bright.

Especially, in a world where there is so much cultural diversity, Mukabhinaya being a non-lingual art form, can be comprehended very easily by any layman.

"The future of mime theatre art is very bright. We got very good response from the people. The appreciation during performance and even after that has encouraged us for the better. Plays with messages have literally made people react very strongly. That's very important…It's a victory for us," said Vilas Zangad, Event coordinator and an artist.

Meanwhile, the festival was participated by about 36 national fame mime artists who came from all over the country that include States like West Bengal, Manipur, Kerala, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan.

"In everyday activity, once or twice or number of times, every person does mime in some or the other manner…either my calling or any other gesture. So, basically, mime comes first than all other theatre activities. That is the difference," said Praveen, a mime actor from Kerala.

In Bharata's Natyashastra, the finer aspects of role-playing have been discussed under Mudras (gesture with hands). Hence, it demands rigorous practices to perfect its various techniques.

The youngsters who visited as audiences were thrilled to watch the absorbing performances of various artists narrating everything without using a word.

"It is very different from other forms of theatre art because here artists perform or express without any dialogues. Then only we understand what they are trying to convey. Obviously, great talent is required here," said Neha, another member of the audience.

In this art form, make-up is done in black and white combination so that the audience can see artist's expressions very clearly.

"It is very exciting. For the first time, I have seen such show…it was really nice…I was really impressed by the show. I want more such shows to be organised. Young generation should come here and encourage artists and the mime art theatre," said Ashutosh, a member of the audience.

It is believed that this art can be utilized as a very effective medium of mass communication. Presently, this art is being used in different parts of the world to raise awareness on various social issues.