The oldest Hindu dramas, or rather colloquies sanvadas , were not composed in Sanskrit, but in Pr krit. The Mah -Bh rata and R m yana supplied no end of subjects, even as the Bible was the inexhaustable source of the mysteries and miracle plays in medieval Europe. Indeed, originally the Pr krit Sanv das were mysteries too, either Krishna or Shiva acting and dancing the principal part. Favourite episodes from the Govinda s eventful life were the Slaying of Kansa the Tyrant and the Binding of the Heaven-storming Titan. Large crowds came to witness these open-air spectacles. The grand finale, a merry roundelay of the bright-eyed Gopis, proved a special attraction. Rival worshippers flocked in equal numbers to the wanton bacchanals held in honor of Shiva. The Vedic priesthood endeavoured to expunge whatever was lascivious or farcical in the popular cult of the two primitive gods, but the sanv das, with all their rippling laughter and gross licence, survived, and were even cultivated in Sanskrit literature. Some Vedic hymns have quite a dramatic character. The warfare of the elements is the ever-recurring theme of the sacred Rig lyrics, and after once hymning and glorifying the striking cosmic phenomena, what was more natural than to enact the divine persons with dance and song on high sacrificial feast days? Thundering Indra and his wild mountain host, the whistling maruts or storm-gods irate Agni leaping forth in the red flash of lightning the glistening raindrops trembling with joy at their release from the burst cloud-castles the blushing dawn announcing victorious S rya the rising sun , and the dancing sunbeams upholding his gleaming banner triumphantly-forces of nature, dread or jubilant, are the dramatis person in the extant sanv da hymns. But the Vedic dialogues reflect the afterglow rather than the first morning flush of the rude representations, staged in the vulgar tongue, of Krishna s and Shiva s ancient mysteries. Again, the sublime converse between Krishna and Arjun, told with consummate art in the Bhagavad G ta, and the mystic colloquies held by Shiva and K li, according to the Tantras, are but a late development of the old Pr krit sanv das which, even in the age of the Rig Veda, were no longer fully understood.
Posted On : 03/18/09 12:37:36 AM
Prerna Gupta Reward Points : 17400 Member Since : Wednesday, June 25, 2008
rigin of Hindu drama, as can be noticed, was solely done in the illustrious Sanskrit language, which gradually too became the choice for light street gossip and plain home talk. This phenomenon was one such element, which could just not be tolerated and suffered by the so-called upper classed Brahmins and the erudite. Hence, the Prakrits or vulgar tongues of India thrust themselves forward more and more towards the forefront. Thus was initiated the birth of Prakrits or the common lingo in the origination of Hindu drama for the masses, as opposed to Sanskrit dramas targeted at the class conscious. The bharatas and magadhas began to insert and initiate vernacular versions of both epics referring to Ramayana and Mahabharata and slowly shed off bookish Sanskrit on the whole. The interpreter, who was no longer necessary, from this time onward, participated whole-heartedly in the everyday evening recitation. Musical accompaniment and dramatic expressions further boosted to the success of the two performers .