Modern Garhwali Drama
The modern Garhwali theatre started firm the play ‘Prahlad Natak’ written by Bhawani Datt Thapaliyal (1930). Though Thapaliyal wrote this play in 1914 but staged in 1930 only. Thapaliyal also wrote ‘Jaya Vijay’ play. Tihri‘s resident Shemiar founded a dramatic club in 1917. All plays staged by this club were in Hindustani or Urdu except Pankhu, which was a Garhwali play and written by four friends. Vishamber datt Uniyal wrote ‘ Vasanti’ play and staged in the same year. These plays were based on mythology and have the effects of Parsi theatre in terms of melodrama, dramatization, dialogues and characterization. These dramas were purely morality plays.
‘Adhah Patan’ and ‘ Bhuton ki Khoh’ written by Bhagwati Prasad Panthri also became popular. These plays were written for boosting the freedom movement and against the social miscomprehend of Garhwali society.
In 1952 the famous Garhwali singer Jeet Singh Negi wrote, produced and directed ‘Bhari Bhool’. The language of Bhari Bhool was the mixer of Garhwali and Hindi. This play was staged in Mumbai, Dehradoon, Delhi and other places of India. It was a musical and prose drama. Till date, no other play in Garhwali became so much crowd puller among Garhwalis as Bhari Bhool.
As far as common men’s likings are concerned, the most appreciated Garhwali play is Khadoo Lapata. Lalit Mohan Thapaliyal wrote this play and who also wrote other famous Garhwali plays- ‘ Anchharyun ka Tal’, ‘ Ghar jawain’, Ekikaran and Chimate wale Baba (translation). There is fantasy, comedy, tragedy, satire and morality too in the plays of Thapaliyal. His plays boosted the base of Garhwali theatre and he is most popular dramatist of Garhwali theatre. No other Garhwali dramatist could gain popularity as Thapaliyal. The play Khadoo Lapata is beyond time, place and class.
The play Inami Chand was written by Garhwali poet Gardhari lal Kankal (1971). Kishore Ghildiyal is famous for his three plays-Rug-Thug, Duno Janam and keedoo ki bwe. Veerendra Mohan Raturi wrote and produced ‘Ek Jau Agne” play.
Pareshwar Gaur wrote ‘Aunsi Ki Raat’ and staged this play in 1969. Dinesh Pahadi wrote ‘ Junkhyali Raat’ and this play was directed by Pareshwar gaur in 1962 (Delhi)
The plays ‘Jank Jod’ and Ardh Grameshwar’ are the milestones in Garhwali theatre. Social activist and journalist Rajendra Dhasmana wrote both the plays. These plays are the real modern Garhwali plays and realism in Garhwali plays started from these plays. Ardh Grameshwar is staged more than fifty times and in more than twenty cities of India.
The editor, journalist, storywriter, editor Swaroop Dhoundiyal wrote ‘ Mangatoo Bolya’ and Adaalat (1978-79).
The other known Garhwali plays are-
• Tinchari (Chinta Mani Barhthwal)
• Kansabadha (Kanhayalal Dandariyal)
• Audal (Mohan Singh Bisht)
• ‘Swayember (Kanhaya lal Dandariyal)
• ‘Hari Hindwan (Lalit Keshwan)
• Maletha Ki Kool (Jeet Singh Negi)
• Kaffo Chauhan (Abodh Bandhu Bahuguna)
• Banji Gauri (Uma Kant Balooni)
• Lindrya Chhora (Kusum Nautiyal)
• Ass Aulad (Kulanad Ghansala)
• Bakhraon KO Ggwair Syalh (Bhishma Kukreti)
• Dr Asha Ram ( Narendra Katthait)
Bhishma kukreti also wrote two Garhwali dramas – Bhdyanau Sukh :- The bliss of Touch ability and A Bwe Meen Thain Daru Pilai De: Let us Die for Alcohol