|The crux of CTWâ€™s work lies in the facilitation of dialogue within the community thru Community Theatre. The search has been for alternatives to the traditional frontal methods of communication in theatre as well as out side of it. For this purpose we have used community theater, films, the audio-visual, organized activities in community and public spaces, and used other formal and non-formal communication media to reach out to people.
Theatre in Chandigarh has obviously come of age. It started as a genteel social activity and remained for long confined to schools, colleges and clubs. The pillars of society patronized it as some sort of a pretence for their `culturednessâ€™. Through its own inner impulses, however, it evolved into a variety of forms both academic and experimental. Theatre activity remained by and large a transplanted species which refused for all the efforts and labour to get acclimatized to the environment of the synthetic city of babus and bearers, bureaucrats and liaison agents and of forbidding and cold architectural designs and cleverly segregated and dissocialized habitation.
In the background of the insipid philistinism which is the hallmark of social life of Chandigarh the arrival of Community Theatre Workshop (CTW) was some sort of a happening both theatrical and social. The whole idea of a theatre which has â€œno time for poetry or ornate expressionâ€, and no use of curtain sets, props, lighting or even seating arrangements was shocking. CTW believes only in the human material to crystallize the vision of â€œpure theatreâ€ in which the action itself emerges as the real fact both as an image of the reality and a symbol of its under lying meaning of lack of it, our main endeavor is to break through the four walls of conventional theatre and bring the performance directly into the streets right amidst the common folk. Through this be aspire for establishing an â€œorganic bond between the performers and the audienceâ€ so that both could join into the awaken into the social relevance of entertainment.
Community Theatre takes theatre to a much broader plane. It is very different from the formalised theatre that we are used to seeing in the theatre halls. The accent is on free expression. We believe that every person has infinite potential and possibilities as well as a reservoir of experience within themselves. This potential and experience is a valuable learning resource. The processes of community theatre create spaces and opportunities for participants to articulate their perceptions and experience freely. Theatre activity becomes a psychological space for participants to renew and revise their self-image and to re-define for themselves, their existing roles.