Why do we write? Stories, poems or plays? Rohan Haldar, a student at Kailash Vidyamandir once told me that he writes so that children will start taking an interest in the world of literature. This coming from a boy who studies in middle school. And that in the world of stories there is happiness to be found at the end.
Rohan wrote a play that was performed by his friends and participants in the Arts Education program at PeaceWorks. The play was a funny one, with ironic undertones…a commentary on society. Performed with flair. The pride the boys took in their performance was evident.
The same evening, children from Disha Foundation performed an adaptation of ‘ The King and the Little Man’, a story by K.G Subramanyan. They made the story their own, with a young girl playing the role of a person who transforms the thinking of a society that has allowed itself to be carried away with the glitz of todays age, an age when one has almost forgotten the importance of song and dance, of bird song and of just being. She sang beautifully and with confidence. The King walked with just the right amount of swagger, the courtiers displayed just the right amount of arrogance.
Ayushi, who has been volunteering with PeaceWorks for more than two years now at Kailash Vidyamandir spoke about the pride she felt when she saw ‘her kids’ perform for an audience. Rahul, Soumya and Soumendra, who worked with the children at these centres spoke about the talent that they have. And the enthusiasm.
Which brings me back to my original question. Well, a slightly different one. Why do we do what we do? Maybe its the excitement and slight trepidation that I see on the face of a child who wants to tell a story to his friends. The flush of happiness when they hear applause and words of appreciation—meant for them and them alone.