Theatre that binds

Theatre that binds

A theatrical effort in Kyalakonda village of Shiggaon taluk in Haveri district has improved not only the school atmosphere but also the village life. It all started eight years ago, when Krishnamurthy arrived in the village as a school teacher. Officials sympathised a seemingly introvert Krishnamurthy when they came to know about his posting in the Kyalakoonda school, as they knew the villagers' apathy towards the school and also the infighting between various groups, which affected the society. Nothing deterred Krishnamurthy's enthusiasm to serve in a village school. As he is also from a village, he knew the nuances of village life. The 'last period' of the school was allotted to him and he decided to use theatre as a medium to arouse the students' curiosity in academics and social life.  

The next step was to involve students in decorating the school compound wall with their artworks and public awareness messages. Every year, the  Department of Public Instructions gives a grant to paint school compounds. That fund was efficiently utilised to make the school premises attractive. The students also raised a beautiful garden in the school premises. Gradually, the villagers started getting involved in the activities. The 'last period' became the favourite session for the students, and parents didn't bother if it extended beyond school hours.

As the stress on theatre activities increased, elders also participated with zeal. The school turned into a hub of cultural activities, which in turn improved the village environment. With constant practice and dedication, the school drama troupe has won several laurels ­- both at state and national levels. Even the villagers willingly support these activities, which have brought in harmony and camaraderie among them.

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