Oral History Interview with Ratna Pathak Shah (Mumbai, India)

The Zubovsky Project
,
Jessica Bachman, Interviewer |

0:00 - Soviet influence on the development of Indian urban theater

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Keywords: Bhavai; Dina Pathak; folk theater; Gujarati translations; Indian Theater; Konstantin Stanislavski; Russian plays; Soviet Desh; Soviet Land; Soviet playwrights; urban theater; Vsevolod Meyerhold

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3:25 - Adapting Russian plays into an Indian context at the National School of Drama/ Soviet set design

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Keywords: adaptations of Russian plays; Anton Chekhov; Communist Party of India; Dina Pathak; Indian People's Theatre Association; Konstantin Stanislavsky; Leo Tolstoy; Maxim Gorky; Moscow Art Theatre; National School of Drama; political theater; protest theater; Soviet costume design; Soviet set design; The Cherry Orchard; The Lower Depths; The Power of Darkness; Three Sisters

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8:30 - Indian audiences, actors forget plays were Russian adaptations

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Keywords: adaptations of Russian plays; The Cherry Orchard; Three Sisters

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10:26 - Actress Dina Pathak takes up job as Gujarati translator for Soviet Land/leftist actors and writers in India influenced by Soviet artistic innovations

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Keywords: Ali Sardar Jafri; Communism in India; Communist ideology; Dina Pathak; fellow; Gujarati Soviet Land magazine; Indian People's Theatre Association; IPTA; left movements; poetry recitations; Progressive Writers' Association; PWA; Russian-Gujarati translations; Soviet Cultural Center; Soviet Desh; Uday Shankar

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13:50 - Little Ballet Troupe performs in Bengal during the Bengal famine of 1943

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Keywords: Bengal Famine; dance; famine victims; fundraising; Indian People's Theatre Association; IPTA: dance; jewelry donation; lighting; Little Ballet Troupe; manmade famine; set design; Shanti Bardhan; starving children; Uday Shankar

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16:45 - Relationship between protest theater and trade unionism in Mumbai/lack of archival footage of leftist street theater

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Keywords: Communist Party of India; folk poetry; Lalit Chari; Leftist artists; Lokshahir; Maharashtra; Mumbai trade union movement; political plays; protest theater; public meetings; Shahir Krishnarao Sable; socially engaged theater; street theater; trade unionism

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21:35 - Politically engaged urban theater in post-independence India/ Indian actors' embrace/rejection of the Stanislavski method

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Keywords: Anton Chekhov; Badal Sarkar; Bengali drama; Bengali playwrights; Dina Pathak; Ek Chadar Maili Si; gender inequality; Indian People's Theatre Association; Indian storytelling traditions; IPTA; Konstantin Stanislavski; Maxim Gorky; Motley Theatre Group; Rajinder Singh Bedi; realistic acting; realistic performance; social issues; The Lower Depths

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28:51 - Reading Soviet children's books in Mumbai/ stodgy English translations

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Keywords: affordability; Calcutta; Children's Book Trust; children's books; Communist Party; English translations; folktales; illustrations; Indian intellectuals; Kolkata; leftist families; oral traditions; Progress Publishers; propaganda; Soviet literature; storytelling; urbanization; vernacular translation

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35:16 - Impact of Soviet books on Pathak's visual world

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Keywords: font; illustrated books; layout; storytelling; typeface

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37:14 - Indian theater's embrace of Bertolt Brecht/ family political discussions

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Keywords: 1970s; adaptations; Bertolt Brecht; Cold War politics; Communist Party of India; epic theater; Moscow Art Theatre; political theater; politics; Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh; RSS; songs; The Caucasian Chalk Circle; theater; theatre; Three Penny Opera; translations; United States; vernacular translations; war

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40:39 - Putting on Chekhov plays in India/ translations vs. adaptations

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Keywords: adaptations; Anton Chekhov; Chekhov adaptations; Chekhov one-acts; English plays; Hindi-langauge plays; Indian People's Theatre Association; IPTA; Motley Theatre Group; The Cherry Orchard; The Seagull; Urdu-langauge plays; young actors; zamindars

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43:34 - Soviet artistic influence on Indian printmaking in 1930s/40s

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Keywords: Bengal Famine; Central Ballet Troupe; Chittaprosad; Chittaprosad Bhattacharya; Communist Party of India; Dina Pathak; Indian illustrators; Indian People's Theatre Association; IPTA; Print making; Shanta Gandhi; Socialist Realism; Soviet art; Voice of Bengal

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46:10 - Recycling paper from Soviet magazines to produce theater programs

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Keywords: American propaganda; Balodyan; blank pages; Children's Theater Group; cyclostyle; cyclostyle copier; Mumbai; paper crisis; Parsi Colony; photographs; Soviet Desh; Soviet Land magazine; Soviet propaganda; SPAN magazine; Theatre

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