Kattiakkaran means narrator in Tamil. However, for the play Kattiakkaran, there isn’t one narrator but several. Written by renowned theatre actor, director and scriptwriter Na Muthukumar in the 1980s, Kattiakkaran is being staged by Tamil theatre troupe Koothu-P-Pattarai this time.
Directed by veteran writer and director Prasanna Ramaswamy, the 85-minute play deals with themes of gender, sexuality, patriarchy and the consumer culture that ends up appropriating and commodifying all these human emotions. “The text itself is not bound to a period, so there is no question of adapting it to suit modern times,” says Ramaswamy. “But the themes are still applicable today,” she adds.
Ramaswamy’s interpretation of Muthukumar’s script is different though. “I’ve taken one long monologue and distributed it between some characters. I’ve created other characters too,” she says. For her, the original text is just the context into which the play fits into. “I’ve brought the play on stage through a lot of visualisation. The text is just context for me,’’ she reiterates.
The play doesn’t fit into the traditional plot-driven linear narrative, but it isn’t completely free-structured either. “The play has a beginning, a middle and an end. It had cause and effect as well,” says Ramaswamy.
At Edouard Michelin Auditorium, Alliance Francaise, at 7.30 pm on November 30. Entry is free.