“Parampurush” gives an analytic look at the life, times and thoughts of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahans.
After bringing to the stage plays on mythological and historic stalwarts, be it Karna from The Mahabharata “Pratham Parth” or Julius Caesar “Caesar ke Aakhree Saat Din”, Bapi Bose now focuses on Sri Ramakrishna Paramahans.
“Parampurush”, which had its world premiere last year, returns to the circuit after being chosen to perform at the upcoming Mohan Rakesh Mahotsav.
A product of the Circle Theatre Company, the play does not intend to be a biographical account of the legendary figure but more an analytic look at his life and approach.
Bose has always lent historical subjects contemporary significance and “Parampurush” is no different. “I have drawn a parallel to contemporary situations. Nowhere have I worshipped him, but shown his relevance in terms of secularism. Unfortunately, tolerance has no place in this era,” says Bose about the values Sri Ramakrishna tried to espouse throughout his life.
According to Bose, the production attains relevance in the aftermath of the Mumbai attacks last year, as Sri Ramakrishna was a figure who had faith in all religions. Throughout Bose's theatre career, the director has come out with vital plays when dark episodes cast a shadow on our cultural fabric or when the country passed through important milestones.
“When the Babri masjid was demolished I did “Socrates”, “Sanyasi ki Talwar” based on the sanyasi's struggle against the imperial power, and “Caesar ke Aakhree Saat Din” when the attack on Iraq happened,” says Bose underlining the link between his creative exercises and contemporary realities.
Bose, an alumni of the National School of Drama, says he was lured to Sri Ramakrishna also by his belief in “naari shakti.” “He worshipped his own wife like devi mata,” he says, adding nobody had given that kind of respect to women at the time – in the 19th century.
After this performance, “Parampurush” is also scheduled to be staged at the Bharat Rang Mahotsav early next year.