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Expressions of young talents Kaur: Making a point.
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Expressions of young talents Kaur: Making a point.

KOLKATA: Bringing forth the hidden talent of students and channelising it towards creativity is actress and theatre personality Ramanjit Kaur’s forte.

She is the brainchild behind The Creative Arts which aims to nurture the creative talent of young minds through theatre games, exercises, improvisations, rhythm and movement. “The workshop encourages self-discovery, confidence-building and the shedding of inner complexes,” said Ramanjit.

For Ramanjit, it is yet another effort to relate to the world of theatre. An accomplished actress, she has been associated with the Chandigarh-based Punjabi theatre group ‘The Company’ under the aegis of Neelam Man Singh Chowdhry for the last fifteen years. A lead actress of the group, she has performed at national festivals like the Prithvi theatre festival in Mumbai, the National School of Drama Festivals at the British Council and at the international festivals like the London International Festival of Theatre, International Theatre Festivals in Tashkent-Uzbekistan, Festival d’Avignon in France and the Theatre Festival at Kampanagel-Hamburg to name a few.

She has also worked with Ariane Mnouchkine in Paris for three months through a French Embassy scholarship and has been the recipient of the Charles Wallace India Trust award for which she will undergo a three month training in the UK.

“I was also part of the faculty training students for the British Council School Drama Festival in the city last year,” she said. While marriage has brought her to Kolkata, she is keen to share her experience with the young aspirants through The Creative Arts.

Along with Swati Lal, teacher of creative writing at the Calcutta International School, artist Aradhana Singh (guest teacher) and Aarti Bhartia, who has lent both organisational support and space for the workshops, The Creative Arts comprises youngsters — both five-yearolds and young adults.

“All forms of expressive arts i.e. dance, drama, music and visual arts are incorporated into the workshops to help students develop into an aesthetically educated and socially aware individual,” she said. In fact, great emphasis is laid on nurturing an independent and creative thought process by way of theatre games and improvisations.

A case in point being the two improvised performances by the students held recently. While the junior section presented Saving Of The Old Mango Tree — a play dealing with environmental concerns, the senior section presented Closed Spaces — an introspective look at human relationships against the backdrop of war.

Both were scripted by the students themselves during the course of creative writing workshops by Swati Lal and developed through improvisations by Ramanjit herself. Encouraged by the positive response from the twin performances, Ramanjit feels, “Parents should help children in the process of self-discovery and help them create their identity.”

On her part, she hopes to set up an academy here in the near future.

(This write up was carried in Times of India: 24 April 2003)

01-18-2009 11:26 PM
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