Veteran filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt says theatre connects people with each other. He adds the emergence of digital platform has divided the theatre-going audience.
“I feel theatre connects people with each other. Art forms like theatre, film and music originated to bring people closer to each other,” said Bhatt at Jairangam Fringes theatre festival, which is being held in Mumbai for the first time and which runs till December 17.
He added: “We all know that Mumbai is called the entertainment capital of the country, but when you see theatre festivals like these — which coming from other parts of the country — you realise they give energy to this city.”
Bhatt was at the festival with actors Rakesh Bedi, Virendra Saxena and Makarand Deshpande.
Asked if he feels the popularity of theatre is diminishing in India, Bhatt said: “I think people know the importance of theatre as a medium but the entertainment sector has spread out, especially with the entry of digital medium. Now, entertainment content is available on smartphones to people so, in this scenario, it gets difficult for people to be associated with theatre. Despite that, the atmosphere is exciting.”
Jairangam Fringes theatre festival will showcase six classic plays — “The Way I See It” (by Shiv Subrahmanyam), “Pitaji Please” (Makrand Deshpande), “Kiss Of The Spider Woman” (Hardik Shah), “Baanswada Company” (Niresh Kumar), “Hum Gunahgar Auretein” (Sadiya Siddiqui) and “Ballygunge 1990” (Atul Satya Koushik).