Kathmandu- ‘Buddha Theater Festival-2023’ has started in Kathmandu with the aim to present the biography and philosophy of Gautam Buddha through theater and to spread the message of Buddha around the world. On the occasion of the 62nd World Theater Day, the festival was started from Monday at the Cultural Institute. The festival is jointly organized by the Ministry of Tourism Industry and Cooperatives, Bagmati Province, Cultural Festival Institute and Dabali Theatre.
On the first day of the festival, which began with 10 lamas from Sechin Gumba, a Buddhist temple in Kathmandu, the play ‘Chandalika’ was staged by the Cultural Institute. Conceived and directed by Maya Thapa, this play is based on the story of an untouchable girl who was cursed by her relatives after she fed water to a monk. But later with the blessing of the monk, the story of being freed from the curse and happiness and peace came to their lives is included in the play.
Shushila Thapa, Tirtha Raj Pokharel, Rekha Katwal, Suresh Thapa, Shrikrishna Shahi, Narahari Parajuli, Ram Puri, Surbhi Magar, Anisha Neupane, Veena Bishwokarma, Salina Chhetri acted in the play. Durgaprasad Khatiwada’s music composition and Tirtha Raj Pokharel’s lyrics were in the instrumental ensemble of the play. Durgaprasad Khatiwada, Naresh Prajapati and Rohit Subedi, and Dipendra Vajracharya and Sheela Bista Ali sang. In the event, Ashok Payasi Rai, General Manager of the Cultural Institute, said that the festival will be organized internationally from the next edition as it has matured by the time it reaches the third edition. Followers of Buddha philosophy are all over the world. From the next edition, we will take the Buddha Theater Festival to an international level to attract them to Buddha bhumi Nepal through the stage,” said general manager Rai.
The opening ceremony of the festival was attended by the chancellor of Nepal Pragya Pratishthan Bhupal Rai, festival director Pushkar Gurung and others. This year’s double award with 50,000 rupees was given to colorist Anup Baral. Baral’s wife actress Dia Maskey accepted the award which was handed over by Prada Abhi Subedi and others.
On the second day of the festival, which will last until Chaitra 17th, today, Tuesday, “Three Laughing Monks” directed by Prashant Bagale, “Prativimba” directed by Nikita Gurung and “Patakshar” directed by Geeta Thapa, “Pachyatap” directed by Barsha Bhandari and “Amrapali” directed by Sasmil Magar are being staged on Thursday. At the end of the festival, “Chachhu” directed by Birendra Hamal will be staged on Friday. This is the third edition of the festival.