Mandala Theatre-Nepal is bringing back its classic hit play Sunkeshari as the final batch production of Theatre Lab 10th batch. The student production version of Sunkeshari will be staged at Mandala Theatre, Thapagaun and Pokhara Theatre, Pokhara soon. 25 new student artists will present the play under the coordination of Umesh Tamang and direction of Rajan Khatiwada.
Written by Satyamohan Joshi, the legendary cultural scholar, Sunkeshari is a play based upon an often-said folk story in Karnali, the far western region of Nepal. The play has been woven out of the complex experience of ‘a beautiful girl with golden hair’ due to her celebrated beauty and voice. Sunkeshari, a well-known singer of Maaghal (a typical Nepali folk song) is widely admired for her vocal quality and attractive figure with golden hair. Having so many suitors for marriage, Sunkeshari is the most wanted girl around and beyond the nation. Prajapati, the cousin brother of Sunkeshari loves her very much and wants to marry her. The possessive guy is the person who holds the authority to marry the girl according to their culture. But Sunkeshari doesn’t like his attitude. There are two others who want to marry Sunkeshari. Vikram Shahi, king of Chhinasingh and Saaimal Shahi, king of Raaskot are also cousin brothers but both of them wish to marry with Sunkeshari. Sunkeshari leaves home choosing one of the kings. Two separate journeys start from here. One of Sunkeshari’s who faces different situations created by her own beauty and other of Prajapati’s who determinedly goes to take back Sunkeshari home. The meeting point of these journeys creates the climax of the play.
The original production of Sunkeshari is the first play Mandala Theatre Nepal produced after the inauguration of Mandala Natakghar in Anamnagar, Kathmandu in 2012. It had been selected for three international theatre festivals within a month. The original production was premiered at Rongo Harshe Bingo Barshe, an international theatre festival held in Dhaka, Bangladesh in November 2012 and became the opening play of Kathmandu International Theatre Festival 2012 organized by Aarohan Gurukul in Kathmandu. After that the play was performed in 12th Desh Bidesher Natya Mela (International Theatre Festival 2012) organized by Ritwik in West Bengal, India. The production was also staged as the opening performance of Theatre Mall at Kathmandu Mall in 2014 and at 19th Bharat Rang Mahotsav organized by National School of Drama in New Delhi in 2017.
The original production had been staged two times at Mandala Theatre Anamnagar. Following the huge success with its 28 regular performances, the play was restaged at Mandala in 2014 and 2015 too. The play had already been staged 70 times in Nepal, India and Bangladesh.