20 June, 2021

Leap Over The Fourth Wall

The incredible story of Shivaji Underground, its inspired, unschooled cast, superb mentors and bravura performances

On Stage
A performance of Shivaji Underground in Bhimnagar Mohalla in Mumbai
Photograph by Apoorva Salkade
Leap Over The Fourth Wall

Sowing poison in history,

we reaped riots,

Crooks keep writing and

the reader remains blind,

The gift we need now,

is the awareness of our times,

The gift of sight, and happy times…

Oh king, Oh shivaba… ji ji ji ji

At Vahe, where Narayan Waghmare lives with his parents and brother, theatre and cinema belong to another world. Seventy kilometres from Jalna, battling failing crops and poverty, Narayan and his brother could study only up to class six. Their fat­her, an alcoholic, tried his utmost to meet ends. The thoughts of auditioning at Aramnagar, or performing at hallowed spaces like Shivaji Mandir, NCPA or Prithvi theatre in Mumbai had never crossed Narayan’s mind. All that was before he joined the group that has been performing Shivaji Und­erground in Bhimnagar Mohalla.

What started as a play with a curious name has just had its 500th show and is celebrating its fifth anniversary this...

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