The Other Festival - 2001  
     Dec 1- 7, 2001. Museum Theatre, Chennai (Madras) India.  
    Music. Dance. Drama. Art. You.

    On the Artistes/ Performances 

    A man of few words, his brilliant writing speaks for him. 

    KAUSALYA SANTHANAM, The Hindu, Thursday, December 6, 2001

    “Viragu Vettigal” and “Naarkalikkarar” stood testimony to those enduring strains of Muthuswamy’s works…The crowning piece of  the show came when N Muthuswamy addressed the audience…his observations of  the Tamil  theatrical scenario came across through a series of rhetorics to the audience.” 

    PRIYA GIRIBALAN, CityExpress, Thursday, December 13, 2001

    The influence of Theru-k-koothu on Muthuswamy’s creative sensibilities is nowhere more manifest than in “Kattiyakaran”… A selection of the writer’s articles read by Mangai covered a fascinating range of his thoughts and reflection… “Kuppa Medu”, a street play, had some striking theatre effects…In “Viragu Vettigal”, the strong beat of the percussion instrument and the songs formed an integral part of the play, with some good directorial touches… “Naarkalikkarar” continues to be relevant 24 years after it was staged and had quite a few moments of impact…In the short stories and articles where the writer speaks directly to the audience, the poetry of words and images came across with a moving immediacy.   

    Krishnamurthy’s paintings with their strong quality of drama and poetry hung around the circular hall seemed to fill the action in the centre with dynamism and energy… 

    KAUSALYA SANTHANAM, The Hindu, Friday, December 14, 2001


    “An Unposted Love Letter” was a monologue that didn’t really let you think it was one…you would never have thought it was one hour of one person talking. 

    EXPRESS FEATURES, CityExpress, Monday, December 3, 2001

    There has always been  something wonderfully unbound about Punjab and it is so fitting that Neelam Man Singh should have opened The Other Festival…a well done play, technically perfect and held the attention of  the audience. 

    ELIZABETH ROY, The Hindu, Friday, December 7, 2001 


    In absolute silence …Kirchner clad in a white leotard, bends her body into incredible postures, moving her muscles millimetre by millimetre…  

    JEMIMA RAMAN, City Express, Tuesday, December 4, 2001

    A new and exploratory experience, intensely meditative in quality…body, breath and mind fused into one reality…the utter silence in which she performed was simultaneously unnerving and exhilirating… The exercise of the mind being done with the body fit beautifully with what  The Other Festival is trying  to do: to explore new means of expression and new means of interpretation. 

    ELIZABETH ROY, The Hindu, Friday December 7, 2001 

    Chennai crooner Bonnie Chakraborty and group created a storm inside The Museum Theatre. So what if the songs were in Bengali, Arabic and everything foreign? Music transcends all barriers. Bonnie and Kartik proved it without a doubt with their lusty voices, packed to the brim with energy…The audience clapped, tapped, nodded and went into delirious ecstasy by the time Bonnie wound up the evening. 

    JEMIMA RAMAN, City Express, Tuesday, December 4, 2001

    A complete break away from his past performances…not much of a narration but an abstract performance that used the space in and around cubicles brilliantly 

    DIVYA RAMAMURTHY, CityExpress, Wednesday, December 5, 2001

    At first quite curious, but as it proceeded, the narrative based on the idea of human forms in its inner and outer existence, were all conveyed with clarity and ease. Another striking feature that enhanced  the quality of  this work was the musical support…The tunes used were both classical and fusion melodies which provided an appropriate canvas for the artistes to create visual beauty through symmetry of movements. 

    NANDINI RAMANI, The Hindu, Friday, December 7, 2001

     It took a little while  to realise  that it was not just another Kathakali performance…Arjun Raina instead of restricting himself  to the confines of tradition, soared like a free spirit…His stage persona shifted with an ease that had  the attention of the audience…the real fun started when he pounced on the audience…the more  the audience yielded  to his charms, the more fun they had. Together they traversed the road less travelled, both enriched by the experience. 
    EXPRESSFEATURES, CityExpress, Wednesday, December 5, 2001

    Shakespeare and Kathakali? An edge over the ordinary. A well-knit exercise in drama and dance. And it was most enjoyable…The play of words and characters blended in a strange synergy…when Arjun Raina finished, you almost wished  that he would go on and draw out some more of  these. 

    CHITRA MAHESH, The Hindu, Friday, December 14, 2001

    As the musicians blended from one instrument to the other, the dancers moved from Kalalri to the most sensual, to what bordered on acrobatics…A dance dialogue between movement and sound, body and soul, tradition and modernity…They fought, they crawled, they jumped, they climbed....they amazed…more than their dancing excellence, Samudra Centre for Performing Arts had the audience captivated by  their genuineness. 
    KAMINI MATHAI, CityExpress, Thursday, December 6, 2001

    An evening  productive for  those in search of art forms that are out of the box…Within the sounds there was an inherent silence which could be felt, right from the movements that seemed to slice through the stark stage to one of the artistes swinging by a rope in an ode to creation. 

    CHITRA MAHESH, The Hindu, Friday, December 14, 2001

    What made the hour-long play most interesting was that you actually saw the actors age in front of your eyes without them having to leave the stage…The two actors with only a pile of papers, a telephone receiver, two typewriters and two chairs for company had the audience eating out of their hands. And if you missed it, you really missed something. 
    KAMINI MATHAI, CityExpress, Thursday, December 6, 2001

    In the style of the absurd the tragic elements are left to the audience to sift through  to take home some truths about life… Both actors slipped into their roles with perfect zest and the tragic-comic manner of delivering lines were rather captivating. 

     CHITRA MAHESH, The Hindu, Friday, December 14, 2001

    This is one dancer who is aware of every part of the body…amazing control. Moradian’s first dance set to Mozart’s music was graceful yet forceful…the second piece was also quite powerful as she oscillated between reality and dream. Her style – abstract expressionism – is a combination of jazz, modern ballet and mime. 
    ANNE KURIAN, CityExpress Friday, December 7, 2001

    Starting her musical journey with a sanskrit mantra, Ariane weaved the best of both the western and eastern worlds on her piano…Not only did she bring out the best of her piano but also showed how the combination of east and west can in fact produce magic. 

    ANNE KURIAN, CityExpress Friday, December 7, 2001

    Ariane’s creativity in composition was evident…piano, ghatam and  voice joined and together interwove a delightful tapestry of sound… “Khillona-Tillona” was the humorous final number in which both performers started  talking in their own  tongues, Araine in French and Karthick in Tamil, and was finally replaced by the universal language of music. 

     RPI, The Hindu, Friday, December 14, 2001

    A  totally  new  experience for the Chennai audience…a slow reflective and meditative exploration of movement in silence. 
    VASANTHI SHANKARANARAYANAN, The Hindu, Friday, December 14, 2001

    Padmini Chettur’s production played with our perceptions of simple things and coaxed us into a magical and relativley alternative world where the ground rules seem to have changed…a stunning piece of dance theatre. 

    SOUMIA DHAR, City Express, Saturday, December 8, 2001

    Jam-packed, the audience was bristling with life…choosing a simple yet powerful theme Mallika Sarabhai brought forth a powerful representation of the goddesses and used her performance to get across her underlying theme – women still have  not received the recognition due to them. She juxtaposed bharathanatyam, kuchipudi, storytelling and mime to give a power-packed performance. Powerful, thought-provoking and bold. 

    ANNE KURIAN, City Express, Monday, December 10, 2001

    The UK-based band played ska, rap, reggae, breakbeat and dub.Young and old alike could be seen shaking a leg or two… superb vocals…the bassist possessed a knockout style. 
    ANNE KURIAN, City Express, Monday, December 10, 2001
    For interviews with the artistes, log on to 

    What is The Other Festival?   
    • The Other Festival   • 2001    
    • Photo Gallery of The Other Festival   • 2001