Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Khell, Khell-Tiatr & ‘Non-Stop Drama’

Khell, Khell-Tiatr & ‘Non-Stop Drama’

What is Khell, Khell-Tiatr and ‘Non-Stop Drama’? This is a question that is asked by many lovers of Khell-Tiatr. The question has arised becauses the present artistes stage Khell-Tiatrs and Tiatrs which do not conform with the traditional Tiatr as well as Khell-Tiatr.

In order to understand the exact nature of Khell, Khell-Tiatr and ‘Non-Stop Drama’, the Tiatr Academy of Goa (TAG) called a meeting of veteran Khell artistes which was attended by Patrick Dourado, Vitorino Pereira, Ligorio Fernandes, and the present Khell-Tiatr artistes namely Roseferns and Mario Menezes.

According to these veterans, the Khell was always performed on the ground and hence it was known as ‘Zomnivoilo Khell’. It was truly a form of folk art. ‘Zomnivoilo Khell’ consisted of three ‘Parti’ (playlets) and each ‘Part’ (playlet) comprised of 8 to 10 small songs i.e. ‘Cantos’. The entire story of the ‘Khell’ was narrated to the audience through the songs. Each ‘Canto’ consisted of 2 verses and one chorus. Each ‘Part’ would be of 45 mins to 60 mins duration. The comedy was related to the story of the ‘Parti’.

Somewhere in the late 1950s, Antonio Moraes performed the Khell on a stage. Since then, the ‘Zomnivoilo Khell’ came to be known as ‘Khell-Tiatr’.

Each Khell-Tiatr consisted of two ‘Parti’ having two different themes-one before the interval and the second after the interval. Each ‘Part’ consisted of 10 to 12 songs i.e. ‘Cantos’ and the story of the ‘Khell-Tiatr’ used to be told through the songs. Many a times very few dialogues were said and mostly these dialogues were based on the lyrics of the songs. A ‘Khell-Tiatr’ of two ‘Parti’ can be actually referred to as a musical drama having two different stories. Comedy in the Khell-Tiatr was related to the stories of the two ‘Parti’

In 1976, Rosario Rodrigues, for the first time satged a Khell-Tiatr by setting the entire plot on just one theme instead of two ‘Parti’. He called this presentation of one story from the beginning to the end as Non-Stop Drama. On an average it had 20 to 30 ‘Cantos’ in the beginning. The comedy was fully interwoven with the theme of the play.

As per this information from the veteran Khell-Tiatr artistes, it is clear that the roots of Khell-Tiatr or ‘Non-Stop Drama’ lie in the traditional folk drama called ‘Zomnivoilo Khell’.

In reality, Khell, Khell-Tiatr or ‘Non-Stop Drama’ all means a musical drama which exists in all other languages. The veteran artistes who attended the meeting requested TAG to make efforts to preserve this musical form of Konkani drama called ‘Khell-Tiatr’.

TAG will make efforts to preserve and promote the Khell-Tiatr in its traditional form.

Tomazinho Cardozo
Tiatr Academy Goa


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A big e-welcome to you. Tumcam Maie-mogacho ieukar. Enjoy Life - This is not a rehearsal! Konkani uloi, boroi, vach ani samball - sodankal. Hich Goenchi osmitai ani amchem khalxelponn. Goenchi amchi Konkani bhas! Ekvottachem saddon Goenkaranchem. This is Gaspar Almeida from Parra, Bardez, Goa, based in Kuwait and am connected with the www.goa-world.com website created by Ulysses Menezes, and as Moderator of the famous first of its kind Gulf-Goans e-Newsletter (since 1994) and The Goan Forum and several Goan and Indian associations and forums and e-forums in Goa, India, Kuwait, The Middle East and worldwide.