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Last Updated Thursday April 27 2017 05:50 AM IST

Manju Warrier mezmerizes Ananthapuri as Kavalam's Shakuntala

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manju-drama-1 Manju Warrier enacting the character of Shakuntala in the classical Sanskrit play 'Abhijnana Shakuntalam' at Thiruvananthapuram. Photo: Rinkuraj Mattancheriyil

Thiruvananthapuram: Malayalam actor and known classical dancer Manju Warrier mesmerized theater lovers by enacting the character of Shakuntala in the classical Sanskrit play Abhijnana Shakuntalam here on Monday.

Her venture, Manju Warrier Productions, produced Abhijnana Shakuntalam as a tribute to the theater doyen Kavalam Narayana Panicker, who passed away here last month. Chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan inaugurated the play at the Tagore Theater in the presence of an esteemed audience, comprising people from various walks of life, including filmmaker Adoor Gopalakrishnana, actor Madhu, minister Thomas Isaac and so on.

After the performance, Manju said it was an unusual experience for her and she felt the presence of Kavalam Narayana Panicker all through her performance.

Earlier, announcing the inauguration of the play, Manju had said it was Kavalam’s wish to bring the Abhijnana Shakuntalam to the stage. “I had the good fortune to associate with Kavalam Sir during the last phase of his legendary life when he trained me for Abhijnana Shakuntalam,” she told reporters here. “After his death, his family and I decided to fulfil his wish and to stage the play as he wanted it as our tribute,” she said.

Sopanam Institute of Performing Arts and Research, founded by Kavalam, staged the play and cultural organization ‘Swaralaya’ hosted the program, she said.

The play, like the other Sanskrit productions of Kavalam, offered the twin opportunity to take part in the experiments in modern Malayalam theater and also to reach out to the youth to instil an interest in Sanskrit and ancient Indian culture.

Panicker, who successfully blended the classical tradition and folk elements in the format of contemporary theatre, passed away here on June 26 at the age of 88.

Slide Show

  • Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala

    The audience in the theater waiting to watch the play. Photo: Rinkuraj Mattancheriyil

    Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala
  • Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala

    Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan inaugurating the function. Photo: Rinkuraj Mattancheriyil

    Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala
  • Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala

    Photo: Rinkuraj Mattancheriyil

    Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala
  • Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala

    Photo: Rinkuraj Mattancheriyil

    Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala
  • Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala

    Photo: Rinkuraj Mattancheriyil

    Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala
  • Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala

    Photo: Rinkuraj Mattancheriyil

    Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala
  • Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala

    Photo: Rinkuraj Mattancheriyil

    Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala
  • Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala

    Photo: Rinkuraj Mattancheriyil

    Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala
  • Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala

    Photo: Rinkuraj Mattancheriyil

    Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala
  • Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala

    Photo: Rinkuraj Mattancheriyil

    Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala
  • Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala

    Photo: Rinkuraj Mattancheriyil

    Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala
  • Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala

    Photo: Rinkuraj Mattancheriyil

    Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala
  • Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala

    Photo: Rinkuraj Mattancheriyil

    Manju Warrier as Kavalam's Shakuntala
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