In the Presss again!!!!

Bangalore Mirror, 11 March 2009. In the Pic: Raghu, Mukesh and Doc (Dayaprasad) in the middle of a session.

Bangalore Mirror, 11 March 2009. In the Pic: Raghu, Mukesh and Doc (Dayaprasad) in the middle of a session.

Publication:Bangalore Mirror; Date:Mar 11, 2009; Section:City; Page Number:11

Bettering lives through theatre Join the Dots organisation does not believe in just producing plays. Helping people from all age groups overcome their fears and imbibe soft skills through theatre is its aim NISHANTH S COONTOOR

Theatre, for most audiences, is a medium through which they might find some entertainment while for an artiste it is a forum to express himself without any hitches. Well, how would it be if there was a role reversal wherein the audience became the artiste who, given the full freedom of expression in this medium, learned to overcome his fears and add to his life skills? Join the Dots, an organisation that regularly conducts theatre workshops, is doing just this. Changing lives, while taking theatre to the people, even those without professional aspirations.

Started by Rahul George in 2004, the group has been imparting soft skills, helping build team spirit and settle any issues that a person might have through theatre. “We conduct theatre workshops for age groups between six and 65 years where we get people from various backgrounds like medicine, engineers, CEOs, housewives, school children and senior citizens. Participants don’t always want to be actors. They just want to explore their creativity and do something with it,” explains Rahul.

“Theatre is such a strong medium, and something that I was always interested in. I have worked in the corporate sector and know the importance of combining vocational skills professionally,” he says.

WORKSHOP ROUTE

Join the Dots has been conducting workshops for corporate houses such as Wipro and Infosys among others. Explaining how the group imparts skills that can be absorbed and polished through this medium, Meenakshi, who has been with it since 2005, says, “When we write a play, it is not written keeping a particular person in mind. It happens often that a 20-something has to play the role of a 65-year-old and vice versa. Unlike in traditional plays, we give them full liberty to put up an act of how they perceive a 60 year old, without giving them instructions.” She has taught before, but it’s the uniqueness that interests her. “We do not have any fixed syllabus which is taught to a large group of people. We look at catering to every individual’s need, which is different,” she says. Rahul adds, “Every scene has no dominating person or character. It’s always teamwork that pays. Suppose this scene is performed by a group from the workplace, it only sensitises them to understand this. And it is this sensitising of people that relaxes them, opens them and simply puts across the importance of dealing with people.”

They have also had participants looking for mentoring and counselling, hoping to discover their career paths, looking to resolve conflicts or to simply discover their true selves.

It may not be an easy task, but the response and satisfaction keeps them going. “We have had many participants who developed courage to move on to bigger projects. And yes, there were a few who have even become actors, and have even begun their institutes,” says Meenakshi.

Musten Jiruwala who runs his own software firm Software Techmust, joined this workshop in 2005. “Stage fear was a major hurdle that I overcame during the workshops. Apart from this, I feel I have become more confident and am also a lot more creative,” he says. And he says he can communicate better now. “During a play, an actor has to speak focusing on his audience. I have now applied this to my business where I explain keeping my client in my mind, something that I did not understand earlier.” Musten still goes back very often and is writing plays when not working.

OVERCOMING COMPLEXES

Karthikeyan Ramadas used the training to follow his dreams. “I worked in the ATS industry where it was simply monotonous. I felt that I was creative enough to do something on my own. I joined the workshop because I was interested in writing plays. Acting, I felt, was not my cup of tea because I would stammer a lot. After a lot scripting, I was encouraged to overcome my stammer.” Karthikeyan now acts, and even delivers dialogues with no hesitation. He chucked his old job to begin his own ad agency called Pixelenic with his friend. “Actually, I owe this to Rahul and Meenakshi,” he says. “I was scared and skeptical if I would be able to carry this off. It was their advice and support that gave me the courage.”

Meenakshi says, “We want to do something in the NGO sector. We will be working on projects with children. We want to help them by conducting fun and learning exercises in whatever small way we can.”

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One Response to “In the Presss again!!!!”

  1. Karan's Hypnosis Clinic Says:

    Karen’s Hypnosis Clinic will be holding A Speech Therapy camp for stammering/ stuttering from 20th June 2009 to 29th June 2009 .
    The centre is holding this camp to identify the various problems faced by people relating to speech. Once their problem is identified, then they are advised according to their problem how to overcome their problem.. It will benefit the person who will be able acquire various techniques of speech and thus improve their speaking skills.

    Those interested can contact the regional centre at 1st Main, 6th cross,Canara Bank Colony, Chandralayout, Bangalore-72 or call Mr.Prabhakaran on Mobile number : 9844386213.

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