AGARTALA, July 23, 2011 (Joseph Pulinthanath) – “What can a musical do for your school and for your child?” Pretty much, the principal and staff of Don Bosco School Agartala would say. An assessment of the recently held School Annual Day celebrations bears out that theatre and stage still remains effective means to mould character and discipline in young minds.
One of the highlights of this year’s Annual School Day celebrations at city’s Don Bosco School was the staging of ‘the Dreamer’ – a musical drama depicting the life of Saint John Bosco after whom Don Bosco institutions are named. Each of the six shows had the capacity crowd of 1300 eager spectators asking for more and making it the talk of the town.
At the formal assessment of the event, it was observed that staging ‘The Dreamer’ had brought about ‘significant changes in the behavior and character of those that were part of the 90-minute music and dance extravaganza. A total of 525 students were involved in staging the play.
“They now display an even greater sense of discipline and purpose; what is more, there are few who have, post-dreamer, become more open, generous and hardworking,” says senior teacher Ishita Kar, who oversaw much of the run-up to the Annual Day.
“It has changed their attitude towards teachers and the curriculum,” says Br Albert Longley sdb, the principal of the school who himself directed the musical. “There is now greater love, respect and openness between the students and the teachers, and as a Don Bosco institution, this is very important for us.”
The audience had nothing but superlatives by way of reaction to the performance of the students. “This is a play the public of Agartala must see. It is better than every theatre production I have been part of in Tripura,” said Mr. Sisir Kar, a leading sound engineer in the state and a regular in every quality production the state can boast of.
“I never thought the youth of Tripura had so much talent in them,” exclaimed Holy Cross Bishop Lumen Monteiro of Agartala, while addressing the audience at the end of the play.
The near professional perfection was achieved within the few but intense days of preparation and rehearsal. “Once the teachers and the students got the concept clear, they became very interested. They put their heart and soul in to it,” recalls Brother Albert. ‘The dreamer’ tells the colorful and touching story of Johny Bosco. Johny later on became known to the world as Don Bosco, the great educator whose followers today manage thousands of educational institutions in over 130 countries across the globe.