is a popular folk legend of Kashmir. Many a known poets of Kashmir have
composed the tale in seven to 14 cantos and a few playwrights have written
its stage versions earlier as well.
Moti Lal Kemmu's Aka Nandun is in
two acts. It has been written primarily for Bhand artistes so that they
could include this play in their repertoire. The first act is full of humour,
mime, wit and satire, the second act has pathos, agony and pain. The ending
is as per tradition and happy one. The play has soofi undertones and fully
uses the vakhs and shrukhs of Lal Ded and Nund Rishi. The playwright has
given new interpretation to the tale.
The play contains folk style songs
and dances. It has been so designed that Bhands can give open air
performance as per their age old practice.
All the musical notes and tunes
are Kashmiri folk and Sofiyana tunes.
is a village, 13 Kms. away from Srinagar . It has been inhabited by Bhands
for the last two centuries. These Bhands are known for soofiyana singing,
Bandh pather and folk dances. There are several registered parties still
practicing the traditional art in the village but the National Bhand Theatre
has emerged as one of the foremost folk theatres to present Bhand pather
plays in and outside the State . The theatre won laurels in 1984-85 with
its participation in the first National Theatre Festival of Sangeet
Natak Akademi with Ashiq Te Gopali under Shri Ravi Kemmu's direction.
To do a workshop with these artistes
is to infuse new strength in them to preserve this form and encourage new
generation to keenly pursue the art. How for present endeavour, production
of Aka Nandun will be succeessful, can be judged by the people after
viewing it in the open Jashans.