Artistes during a performance at the youth fest at USTM

GUWAHATI: Theatre in the Northeast region of India has been able to keep itself free from the influence of films.

This was observed by theatre personality and deputy director of Doordarshan Kendra (Delhi) Rajeev Raj Srivastava while addressing the audience at the 36th Inter-University North East Zone Youth Festival – ‘Yuva Pratibha’ – at the University of Science and Technology Meghalaya (USTM) on Friday.

Srivastava is here as one of the jury members of the 20-member judges of the youth festival.

Artistes perform at the youth festival at USTM on Friday.

The five-day event is being organized by the Association of Indian Universities (AIU), New Delhi and hosted by USTM at Khanapara (Ri Bhoi) from January 4 to 8.

“My perception of theatre performance in the Northeast region was quite different from what I have seen here today. I was stunned to see such beautiful performances. While in the other zones such as the North or the Central zone, theatre is very much influenced by films. But the most interesting aspect I have noticed here is that, fortunately, the theatre here has been able to free itself from this film influence,” Srivastava said.

He was also amazed by the culture of folk and classic theatre and its fusion with the modern art of theatre.

Artistes perform at the youth festival at USTM.

Expressing his views, Dr. Manish Jangra, another senior theatre personality and deputy director, Youth Welfare, Chandigarh University, Mohali stated, “I congratulate the USTM team, the chancellor, vice-chancellor, volunteers and all for holding this youth festival in a very organised way, working day and night to make it a success. This success will be imprinted in the pages of the history of the youth festival.”

He said the plays performed were based on socially relevant issues, reflecting the thinking of the youth.

“I am sure all the best-performing youths of the Northeast will be able to show their magic in the upcoming national-level competitions of the youth festival,” Dr. Jangra, a jury member at the event, added.

An artiste performs at the inter-university Northeast youth festival at USTM on Friday.

A panel of 20 esteemed and expert jury members from across the country is at the event to judge the various cultural and literary competitions.

Some of the other jury members include Mrinal Kumar Pathak, AIR (All India Radio) and Doordarshan Kendra artist; Dr. Nikhilesh Dnyaneshwar Nalode; Dr. Santosh Kumar Pathak, renowned sitar player and author; Tribhuvan Kumar Deo, director, Marsi Art and Culture, Delhi; Suman Singh, professional artiste, writer; Shailendra Kumar, freelance painter and photographer; Dr. Sudhir Kumar, LN Mithila University, Darbhanga; Amardeep Singh Panesar, director, Rhythms International Folk Art and Tapas Debnath, Kathak artiste.

The competitions at the event on Friday included one-act play, classical instrument solo (non-percussion), classical vocal solo, light vocal Indian, group song (Indian), collage making, spot photography, clay modelling, and debate.

The competitions scheduled for tomorrow are folk orchestra, cartooning, Rangoli, installation, quiz, mime, and mimicry.

The participating universities at the festival are Gauhati University, Cotton University, Bodoland University, ICFAI University, Tripura, Tezpur University, Dibrugarh University, National Sports University, North Eastern Hill University, Rajiv Gandhi University, Dhanamanjuri University, Manipur University, Manipur University of Culture, Royal Global University, Indian Institute of Information Technology Guwahati, and the hosts USTM.

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