Street plays and literacy drive
Street plays are important to literacy campaigns because they have been evolved as an art form to overcome obstacles faced while educating the poor.-Gauhar Razaindia Updated: Mar 10, 2004 05:44 IST
Street plays are important to literacy campaigns because they have been evolved as an art form to overcome obstacles faced while educating the poor.
An analysis of the data collected during a survey at Mongolpuri, a resettlement colony in New Delhi, shows that 30 per cent of the people depend mostly on people-to-people discussions to gather information. The percentage rose to above 40 among a fairly large sampled population of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Madhya Pradesh.
To reach this population through the electronic media is difficult and so, non-governmental organisations have come to rely on melas, cycle and padyatras and street plays to reach out to the masses.
The street theatre is popular among literacy activists for other reasons too. The grammar of the theatre, the ease with which a performance can be organised, the minimal use of properties, the flexible arena and the possibilities of mobility, make it a more suitable tool to reach a remote or left out section of society.
Due to the increase in science movements and literacy campaigns recently, many new street theatre groups have sprung. Few of the organisations have also attempted to explore the potentials inherent in the art form.
The experiments that especially attempted to improve the plays by including traditional folk songs in the script through multiple uses of properties and creative use of vertical space have yielded good results.