Happy Days staged at Shilpakala Academy

May 22, 2022

Samuel Beckett’s Happy Days was staged at the Experimental Theatre Hall of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy on Saturday.
Translated by Kabir Chowdhury and adapted and directed by Shuvashis Sinha, the play is a take on the absurdity of life, an investigation into meaning and meaninglessness of human existence.
Although the original play contains two characters, Shuvashis Sinha has transformed it into a monodrama.
The play gives the audience a glimpse into the happenings in the life of a middle-aged woman named Winnie. The play begins with the sound of a bell that wakes Winnie up and ends with the sound of another bell that makes Winnie go to sleep.
In-between, what Winnie does, as Vladimir and Estragon do in Waiting for Godot, amounts to nothing. She opens her bag, brushes her teeth, looks herself in the mirror, and recounts her past, her first kiss, her love. In short, she does nothing that can be called ‘an action’.
What she does excessively is talking. She talks of her life, her past, her fading beauty and what not, and time and again she speaks of happy days that are yet to come.
‘After we brought the play to stage, we staged it 21 times across the country within a year. But we were not able to stage it due to the Covid-19 crisis. We are staging the play at Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy after a hiatus of two years,’ Shuvashis Sinha told New Age.
‘We will stage the 26th show of the production at the same venue on Sunday,’ added Shuvashis Sinha.
Jyoti Sinha, reputed for her acting in monodrama Kahe Birangana, plays the character of Winnie in the monodrama.

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