A drama whose name evokes rich imagery in the mind of every Telugu movie-watcher, now being presented by India's oldest theatre group. Brace up, indeed.
Sri Venkateshwara Natya Mandali, popularly known as Surabhi Theatres, in association with the Department of Culture, is presenting one of the most popular padyanatakas of all time, Maya Bazaar. The show will go on for 3 days - 27th, 28th & 29th August - at the Telugu Lalitha Kala Thoranam.
Mayabazaar, also called Sasirekha Parinayam, is based on the celebrated episode in the Mahabharata in which Arjuna's son Abhimanyu falls in love with Balarama's daughter Sasirekha. Balarama is against the marriage as Abhimanyu doesn't have any kingdom to inherit, and moreover, since his father is in exile.
Krishna advises Abhimanyu to approach Bheema's son Ghatotkacha for help. Ghatotkacha, with his magical powers, transforms himself into Sasirekha, and starts staying in the kingdom as the original goes romancing Abhimanyu.
Abhimanyu, in due course, marries Sasirekha with Krishna's blessings. Unaware of all this, Balarama arranges his daughter's marriage with Duryodhana's son. But the bride appears as a ghost to the groom, and he runs away in fear. Angered by this, Balarama vows to kill Abhimanyu, but Krishna intervenes and pacifies him.
Veteran artistes of the Surabhi group R Dasaradhi Rao, R Bhoja Raju and V Venkata Rao will present this evergreen mythological drama, complete with sets, sounds and special effects, in the huge open-air venue.
Surabhi is the oldest theatre group in India, started sometime in the 1890s by Vanarasa Govind Rao, who had 3 sons and 10 daughters. As the size of the family expanded, several sub-groups were formed, one such being Sri Venkateshwara Natya Mandali.
Initially there were 50 companies, which dwindled to 16 in 1974 and only 4 in 1982. Currently, there are 5 functioning across Andhra Pradesh, all under the umbrella of Surabhi Nataka Kala Sangam. Sri Venkateshwara Natya Mandali, the biggest of them all, was set up in 1937. Today, their troupe has 62 members.
Please contact R Nageswara Rao on 98490-26386 for further details.