Unfolding a Fabric of Spectacular Enchantment: A review of ‘Pyramus and Thisby’
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‘Enchantment galore’ upon the senses of theatregoers seemed the motive and motif for the twelfth year anniversary show of ‘Pyramus and Thisby’ written and directed by seasoned theatre practitioner Jehan Aloysius, which unfolded on the boards of the Wendt on the 7thof July. From the very outset it was clear that this was a labour of great passion displaying skill and planning on the part of the theatre company Centre Stage Productions headed by Aloysius. Yours truly bore witness to every second of the ‘performance’ of this celebration of the magic of theatre that started, strictly speaking, not on the boards of the auditorium but the space of frontal pavement of the Lionel Wendt Arts Centre where a torch lit skit of ritual like revelry was performed to set the mood as to what kind of rambunctious comedy was to erupt indoors once the bell rang to start the show. This palette whetting preshow skit was a theatricalised announcement and introduction of sorts done in olden Sinhala folk drama style as to ‘who would be what’ in the stage play called ‘Pyramus and Thisby’. It was a precursor that revealed how a theatre troupe led by its director Peter Quince, was plotting course to stage a play. The troupe of thespians found in Shakespeare’s ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ thus announced their birth as bilingual Sri Lankans to set the pace for what is an innovation ‘inspired’ by Shakespeare’s celebrated comedy, though perhaps not a fully fledged adaptation.
The production’s motif was consistent in carrying forth the theme and idea of enchantment through music, choreography, costumes, and lighting which had the motive of mesmerising the audience. The wondrous dance scenes of the fairy folk were dazzling displays giving motion to form and colour with rhythm….