The little theatre and big hearts
RC Tiruchirapalli Shakthi, District 3000, in association with St Joseph’s College, hosted a special screening of King Kong with a funny twist by The Smallest Theatre in The World, which brought to life the reel world for close to 2,000 underprivileged students from Seva Sangam School, Maharishi Vidya Mandir, Dollops School, Carmel School and Pravaag School.
In 1971 Marcel Steiner conceptualised this small theatre. Today it tours the world, all thanks to the Grand Theatre of Lemmings which rescued its originality after a 15-year break. Calling it the “Lemmings style,” Rtn Allirani Balaji, President RC Tiruchirapalli Shakthi said “each actor performed multiple roles — Mandy played a sailor, a glamorous film star and a member of the air force. But it never felt like it was the same person.”
I was fascinated to see a white lady speak in English and I could understand everything she was saying.
How did she like the street theatre’s performance? “I wouldn’t call them a street theatre,” she says, adding that she was thoroughly impressed by the way the actors introduced the theatre “so small it can be towed to a two wheeler.” A comfortable two-seat theatre hall made it look like “a play within a play. (Actors jumped into the theatre, performed for their audience inside, and jumped out to continue their performance for the larger audience.)” As for the acting “King Kong was amazing. The five-member theatre group kept the audience engaged. It was much more than a street theatre.”
“They used talcum powder for a fog. Bubbles, water spray guns, stuffed snake toys and a toy aeroplane. I was fascinated to see a white lady speak in English and I could understand everything she was saying,” quipped Hari Priya, a student. “I couldn’t believe that so many things came from inside the box. I was first scared to get in and wondered what was inside it, but their acting was wonderful,” said Nitin, another student.
M Ganesh, a Class 7 student from Vasavi Vidyalaya School, was upset with the scene where “King Kong was killed. Animals have feelings too. I wanted him to have a happy ending.” How was it inside The Smallest Theatre in The World? “You should sit inside it to know how it feels,” he added.
The Smallest Theatre in The World is raising funds for underprivileged children. Something Rotary has been doing all along.
These shows were planned because “exams are about to begin and these children need to unwind and refresh,” said the Club President. But that’s not all. “The Smallest Theatre in The World is raising funds for a charity organisation that works with children in Madurai. The funds they collect from every performance are going to be used to “help those underprivileged children. Something Rotary has been doing all along.”