Tuesday, April 5, 2011


The Central Department of Eng lish, Tribhuvan University, produced and staged August Wilson's Pulitzer Prize winning play Fences at Gurukul from March 14 to 17.This was the Department's first attempt at taking a play from page to stage.

The play begins on payday with two friends Troy (Ramesh Sharma) and Bono (Bhaskar Dhakal), drinking and talking. Troy, a middle aged African-American man, struggles with providing for his family. Troy used to be great baseball player, but this was before the colour barrier came to an end. He now lives as a garbage collector along with his wife, Rose, and sons -Lyons and Cory. Troy had an affair with Alberta, who dies while giving birth to Raynell, their daughter. Rose wants to get the fences built to strengthen the bond of her family. The final act is Troy's funeral, but Cory who has come home from the war refuses to go to his father's funeral. However, Rose convinces him to go. And here Raynell is shown as a happy seven-year-old.
Fences shows the transitional times in America during the fifties when people were living with the orthodox psyche without accepting the changed atmosphere. Though America had officially declared abolition of racial discrimination, the African-Americans were still being deprived of various opportunities.All the actors were students rom the department. Sharma was bold but the monotonous dialogue delivery with a few gestures was a bit boring.

Rose's character enacted by Rebija Adhikari and Laxmi Shrestha could have been better. Bharat Kandel as Cory, Dhakal and Mahendra Rayamajhi as Lyons were fine, while Prakesh Sindhuliya as Gabriel and Reena Gurung /Neela Adhikary as Raynell were the stars of the show though they had short roles.
Bluesy number like Hit the Road between the scenes managed to evoke the perfect ambience on stage.
Bal Bahadur Thapa, a drama teacher at the department, made a promising beginning not only as a director but also as someone who can fill the gap between theoretical study of the plays and their staging.

-Umesh Chandra Lamsal,MA IInd Year, Central Department of English,TU

source: The Himalayan Times, 6 april 2011