New Delhi, 13th March 2018

 Today’s ‘Interface’ with Mr. Tobias Veit

 Celebrated theatre director Mr. Tobias Veit was the guest at the first ‘Interface’ session held today, in conversation with the former director of National School of Drama (NSD), Dr. Anuradha Kapur. Mr. Veit is the Executive Director of the Schaubühne Berlin and studied directing at the Academy of Dramatic Arts. He has been working at the Schaubühne since 1999, first as head of artistic production, since 2012, in the General Management. From 1998-99 he worked as a production manager at the Deutsches Theatre under the artistic direction of Thomas Ostermeier and Jens Hillje.

 Talking about the idea of Schaubühne and its productions, Mr. Veit says, “Schaubühne considers itself an international theatre. We have a lot of international partners and present plays across the world. However, artistically we are local – the focus on themes, issues, topics is local – we look at Berlin, Germany and Europe and within ourselves. There are over 260 theatres in Germany with technicians and actors. As opposed to that, we are a private company legally but get funds from the city of Berlin, so we are in that structure. However, as opposed to them, we reach out to connect and that is acknowledged by politicians and city of Berlin but not to that extent, that we think is necessary.”

 He insisted that structure alone does not define the work and it points to a larger social question. “The structure defines the work. However, the actors have an artistic perspective and the works you provide them have to match that perspective. The choice of actors defines the work. There is now a discussion going on in Germany that whether the actors in our ensemble represent our society. It is actually a social question,” the director says.

 Emphasising the importance of audience and their reactions, he says, “Much of the production depends on what you want to tell and how you want to tell and that becomes the form of the production. We do think of our audience but more we observe our audience. We observe how they react to our plays and then design our next productions based on the observations. When we shifted our perspective to middle class, we learnt a lot from them and helped us shape our future productions. You have to know if the audience is ready for your production or not. This is how you built a loyal audience base for yourself.”

 “There are strong connections between acting schools and theatres in Germany and they collaborate very closely. The students get to work under professional circumstances and theatres get a chance to meet young talent. I believe every theatre needs to learn from different acting schools and theatres from different regions and countries. This offers them an opportunity to incorporate new practices and techniques in their productions than just stay enclosed in traditional practices,” says the well-known director.

 Talking about the classics and adapting them to the modern times, Mr. Veit says, “We do not stage classic plays because they are classic but because they speak volumes about the society. However, it is essential to find contemporariness in the classics because audience need to relate to the realities of today. We have to try and step into the eyes of the author and see what was it that he was trying to tell back then and what would he be saying today about it?”


New Delhi, 13th March 2018

Special Highlight:

International Seminar: As a part of the 8th Theatre Olympics, the National School of Drama (NSD) will host a two-day international seminar on ‘Narrative, New Narrative, Post Narrative: Making of newness’ on 14 and 15 March 2018. (Bahumukh, 10:00 A.M. onwards)

Today’s Allied Activities

Meet The Director

Directors Dr. K. Ramakrishnaiah (Manteswamy Katha Prasanga), Ms. Vibhawari Deshpande (Y) and Mr. Ashim Das (Caligula) attended the session today. Eminent theatre critics Mr. Sangam Pandey too attended the session.


  • Talking about his play ‘Manteswamy Katha Prasanga’, Dr. K. Ramakrishnaiah says, “It is a folk play with a lot of poetry and this fact attracted me to choose this play. It is a very popular play in Karnataka and we have performed it in front of as much as 10,000 people.”

  • Discussing about the concept of her play ‘Y’, Ms. Vibhawari Deshpande says, “Radicalism is on a rise in the world and people like to curb the voices that do not say something that they seem suitable. We have tried to talk about the target audience that we perform for and not about a single entity. We all have a Jihadi inside us and the play talks about the religious dilemma that we as human beings face each day.” Praising the play, Mr. Sangam Pandey says, “Y displays great acting talent and uses music perfectly with the narrative. It was very engaging. A viewer can watch it for a very long time.”

  • Talking about his play ‘Caligula’, Mr. Ashim Das says, “Caligula resides in each one of us, every city and every country. Caligula is a very strong character in history and I chose this play because I felt it is my duty to present the thoughts of this legendary character and the deep rooted ideologies of our culture to my audience.”

Today’s Other Activities

 The stage of 8th Theatre Olympics today became a multicultural celebration of performing arts as folk performances from states like Uttarakhand, Rajasthan and Punjab delighted the audience with a mesmeric display of colours, Indian cultural heritage and passion for performing arts. While the traditional dance forms from the royal state of Rajasthan gave a glimpse into the aristocratic legacy of the region, folk dance of Uttarakhand gave an insight into the religious practices of this hilly terrain. The celebratory spirit of Punjabi Bhangra and Gidda took the audience by storm.



New Delhi, 13th March 2018

Special Highlight:

The ongoing second phase of 8th Theatre Olympics in Delhi will conclude with four foreign productions slated for performance in next two days (14th to 15th March 2018).

  • 14 March: The Lonely Room (Group: Fool’s Cap Theatre & Hoax Theatre, France; Language: Non-verbal; Auditorium: Shri Ram Centre; Time: 5:30 P.M.) and Jiudo Aakash (Group: Danfe Theatre Group, Nepal; Language: Nepali; Auditorium: Abhimanch; Time: 8:30 P.M.)

  • 15 March: La Gioia (Group: Emilia Romagna Teatro Fondazione & Compagnia Pippo Delbono, Italy; Language: Italian; Auditorium: Kamani; Time: 6:30 P.M.) and Phaedra (Group: Department of Theatre and Performance Studies, Bangladesh; Language: Bengali; Auditorium: Abhimanch; Time: 8:30 P.M.)

Today’s Performances

Medea:This Sinhalese play is adapted from the ancient annals of Greece, written by Euripides. Directed by Saman Zoysa, the play is about society and how it deals with people who do not fit into the dominant cultural code. (LTG; 4:00 P.M.)

Electra:Another adaptation of a Greek tragedy, this play directed by Abhijit Dasgupta depicts the human condition and our relations with the society – love and hatred, right and wrong, vice and virtue captured in ancient myths that is relevant till date. (Sri Ram Centre; 5:30 P.M.)

Vidyottama:The Hindi play by Mohan Maharishi tells the story of Vidyotamma, daughter of Kind Vikramaditya who later became the wife of poet Kalidasa. The play revisits the classical tradition through new modes of artistic expression. (Kamani; 6:30 P.M.)

Compassion: the History of the Machine Gun: This bilingual play in German and French by director Milo Rau talks about the fate of overwhelming number of refugees in Europe and the suffering of people from the Middle East and Africa are ubiquitous in Facebook timelines, on television and in the press. (Abhimanch; 8:30 P.M.)