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Tiatr is a type of musical theatre that is popular in the state of Goa on the west coast of India, as well as in Mumbai and among expatriate communities in the Middle East, United Kingdom, and other cities with a significant presence of Konkani speakers. The dramas are primarily performed in the Romi Konkani dialects and incorporate elements such as music, dance, and singing. Individuals who perform in tiatr are referred to as tiatrists.
The word tiatr comes from the Portuguese word for theatre, teatro. Earlier variations of the word were theatrothiatro and tiatro.
Tiatr today revolves around social, religious, and political themes. It is considered to be a mirror of Goan culture. The drama consists of six or seven acts called pordhe. These acts are interspersed with songs, which are not necessarily directly linked to the content or issues of the main drama. Typically, there are two or three songs between each of the acts.
Tiatrists have always demonstrated a very high degree of social awareness.[ citation needed ] Most of the themes of tiatr are concerned with social problems confronting the people. Despite centuries of Portuguese suppression and post-liberation neglect from the state governments, tiatr as an art form has not just survived but thrived and reinvented itself in many ways. [ citation needed ]
The tiatr as a dramatic form has been traditionally dominated and patronised by the Christian community, but over the years several young Hindu artists have been performing in the tiatr, which are also seen by people from the Hindu community.
Songs integral to the plays are known as kants. Other songs, called kantaram, are generally either comedic or based on topical, political and controversial issues that are interspersed through the performance. These musical interludes are independent of the main theme of the play. The songs are often satirical and unsparing of the politics and politicians of Goa. The music is provided by a live band including keyboard, trumpet, saxophone, bass guitar and drums.[ citation needed ]
Besides the regular commercial shows, tiatrs are held as part of the celebrations of nearly every church and chapel feast in the state.
The Goa Kala Academy organises a state-level tiatr competition every year while the Tiatr Academy organises a popular tiatr competition for dramas which has exceeded 25 performances.
Tiatr songs and performances are recorded and sold on CD and DVD in Goan and Middle Eastern markets.[ citation needed ]
Although efforts have been made to preserve the art form as a tradition of Goa, there have been calls for greater recognition of Mumbai-based tiatrists.
There is another version of the tiatr called the khell tiatr, whose performance is restricted to the festivals of Carnival, Intruz and Easter. It differs from the Konkani tiatr in another respect, that is, that its songs are integrated with the main drama and do not deviate in content from it.[ citation needed ]
Prior to the emergence of tiatr, entertainment in Konkani was mainly through zagors and khells. Both of them had their distinct style. While the zagor was more lyrical, the khell had dialogues and while the former was more popular in Bardez; the latter was firmly entrenched in Salcete.
Costancio Lucasinho Caridade Ribeiro, more popularly known as Lucasinho Ribeiro, who was from Assagao, was seeking employment in Bombay. Passionate about the performing arts, he was highly impressed with the stylised Italian operas performed there. He took up a job for an Italian opera troupe which was touring Indian cities at the time, staging an opera called Italian Boy. When the troupe left India, Lucazinho[ spelling? ] Ribeiro bought the costumes used in the play with the intention of staging a Konkani play on the style of the Italian Opera. His collaborators in the effort were Caetaninho Fernandes of Taleigao and João Agostinho Fernandes of Borda, Margao.
On Easter Sunday, 17 April 1892, the first-ever tiatr performance, Italian Bhurgo, adapted from the Italian play, was staged at the New Alfred Theatre, Bombay. This day is celebrated as Tiatr Dis (Tiatr Day). Hence, the Goan art form of tiatr was the product of the meeting of Goan culture and the opera of Italy. Since there were many different scenes in this tiatr and it required different stage sets, they thought of dropping the curtain and performing songs and dances in front of it. This was needed to entertain the audience while the stage setting was being done behind the curtain. These songs and dances did not have any relevance to the theme of the play.
The first original tiatr script was written and directed by João Agostinho Fernandes in 1895 in Bombay and was titled Belle de Cavel or Sundori Cavelchi. For all his consistent devotion and encouragement over fifty years, Fernandes was conferred the title Pai Tiatrist (Father Tiatrist).
Regina Fernandes, wife of the playwright João Agostinho Fernandes, became the first female tiatr actor in Bhattkara on 22 November 1904. Divorce, a tiatr written and directed by Airistides Dias, was the first konkani tiatr to complete 100 performances on 5 October 1980.
However, as time passed, the standard of zagor as well as Khell deteriorated in quality with the introduction of elements of vulgarity. Educated people stopped patronising the zagor as well as the khell. While tiatr was making its presence felt, its original form – the zagors and the khells – were dying a slow death and the zagor finally stopped being performed while the khells continued.
In 1956 the khell underwent a dramatic change. Given its state at that time, Antonio Moraes thought it fit to take the khell from the street performance to a stage performance. Helped by his friend and colleague Antonio Marian, the khell was performed on a stage for the first time with a backdrop and other paraphernalia associated with theatre. The first khell tiatr, Sandlolo Put, written and directed by Antonio Moraes, was staged on the third day of Carnival of March 1956. However, this form became very popular only in the 1970s when Rosario Rodrigues coined the term khell tiatr and came up with extremely successful shows. Thus, the ground-based plays known as khells evolved onto the stage and further into 'non-stop dramas'. They have now generally dropped this label and are generally referred to as tiatrs.
Tiatr contributed to keeping the Konkani language alive during Portuguese colonial rule, when Konkani was suppressed. Tiatrists played a major role in the struggle to make Konkani the official language of Goa.
In 2007, the Government of Goa started the Tiatr Academy of Goa to facilitate the development of tiatr. In 2008 legislation was approved granting 15 lakh (1,500,000) rupees to the newly formed Tiatr Academy of Goa.
Some of these names are from an article on GoaWorld.com.
|A. J. Fernandes
|A. M. Pacheco
|Agostinho Temudo (Comedian Agostinho)
|Alex de Sanvordem
|Alexinho de Candolim
|Alexinho de Maxem
|Alfred Rose (Rosario Alfred Fernandes)
|Anthony de Sa
|Antonette De Calangute
|Antonio Francisco de Gauravaddo
|Benny de Aldona
|Bernard de Aldona
|Bernard de Parra
|Betty Ferns (Maria Vital Fernandes)
|Betty Naz (Beatrice Josephine Fernandes)
|Comedian Selvy (Matheus Correia)
|C. Alvares (Celestino Alvares)
|Caitano Milagres Fernandes
|Cecilia (Albuquerque) Machado
|Champion Alvares (Sebastiao Alvares), Saligao
|Crista Furtado & Milagres Fernandes
|Coutinho (Miss Julie, from Candolim)
|Cypriano (Star of Oxel)
|Derrick Mendes (Mendes Bros.)
|Diogo Cardoz de Khobravado
|Dodd de Verna (M. Dodd de Verna)
|Dummulo de Gauravaddo
|Emmy Fernandes (Colva)
|Felix Mendes (Mendes Bros.)
|Francis de Parra
|Francis de Verna
|Francis Xavier Mendes
|Nevel Gracias (Vel'lekar)
|H. Britton (Herminizildo Camilo)
|J B Rod.
|J. P. Souzalin
|João Agostinho Fernandes (Pai Tiatrist)
|Jose Rod de Parra
|John Dias (Candolim)
|Johnny de Saligao
|Juzinho D'Souza, musician
|Lajea Da Costa
|Lawrence de Tiracol
|Leena de Anjuna
|Marceline de Betim
|Mario de Colva
|Mario de Navelim
|Master Ingnatius de Mapusa
|Menino de Bandar
|Mike Mehta (Transfiguracao de Jesu Cristo Rodrigues)
|Mohana (Miss Mohana)
|Olavo Ernesto Gomes
|Peter Gomes de Umtavaddo
|Peter V Fernandes
|Philomena Braz Crasto
|Philu de Aldona
|Prem Kumar (Peter D'Costa), Chandor
|Rosario Agnelo Dias
|Sebastian (S.B. Radio)
|Star of Curtorim
|Star of Arossim
|Tommy Alvares (J. S. Alvares) Brother of C. Alvares – Sangolda
|Tony King (Anthony Alvares), son of Champion Alvares
|Victor de Calangute
|Vincent de Saligao
|Vincent Fernandes (Murganv Bondr)
|Xavier Mendes (Mendes Bros.)
|Vincente Fernandes (Sezapai)
|William de Curtorim
|Bab Kistu de Calangute
|Late Cajetan de Sanvordem
|Late Silva de Benaulim
Music of Goa refers to music from the state of Goa, on the west coast of India. A wide variety of music genres are used in Goa ranging from Western art music to Indian classical music. Konkani music is also popular across this tiny state. Being a former territory of Portugal, Goa has a dominant western musical scene with the use of instrument such as the violin, drums, guitar, trumpet and piano. It has also produced a number of prominent musicians and singers for the world of Indian music. Portuguese Fado also has significance in Goa.
Joao Francisco Silva, known professionally as John D'Silva, is an Indian actor, comedian, playwright, and director known for his work in Konkani films and tiatr productions. D'Silva is the first tiatrist to enter the Limca Book of Records in 2010 for acting, writing, directing and producing 25 tiatrs having a double alphabet in their titles.
Matheus Correia, known professionally as Comedian Selvy, was an Indian comedian, actor, playwright, singer, director, and producer who primarily worked on the Konkani stage and is regarded as one of the greatest Konkani comedians of his generation. He was noted mainly for his comedy performances and was deemed as Goa's most loved comedian.
Mario Piedade Menezes, popularly known by his sobriquet Tragedy King, was an Indian theatre director, playwright, and actor who primarily worked on the Konkani stage. He was the vice president of the Tiatr Academy Goa.
John Claro Fernandes, known professionally as John Claro, is an Indian writer, theatre director, playwright, and actor. Throughout his extensive career, he has made crucial contributions to the development and advancement of Goan tiatr. His noted research on the history of tiatr led to the discovery that the inaugural tiatr production, titled Italian Bhurgo, took place on 17 April 1892, at the New Alfred Theatre in Bombay, presently occupied by the Police Commissioner headquarters.
Miguel Manoel Rodrigues, known professionally as Minguel Rod or M. Rod., was a Goan singer, composer, playwright, and actor known for his work in tiatr productions. One of the greatest composers of the Konkani stage, he was a leading figure in the golden phase of tiatr from the 1940s to the mid-1950s, alongside Konkani actor C. Alvares. Throughout his career, he composed over 300 kantaram and wrote 32 tiatrs, many of which were well-received and popular among his audience.
Xec Amirodin, known professionally as Sheikh Amir, is an Indian impressionist, singer, actor, comedian, and theatre director known for his work in Konkani films and tiatr productions. Referred to as the "Mimicry King", he is known for his versatile performances, having mastered the styles of 40 politicians and tiatr singers.
João Agostinho Fernandes, popularly known as Pai Tiatrist, was a Goan playwright, theatre actor, and former chemist, known for his contribution to staging the first teatro Italian Bhurgo, on 17 April 1892 in Bombay at the New Alfred Theatre, along with playwright Lucasinho Ribeiro, Caitaninho Fernandes, and Agostinho Mascarenhas.
Carmo Piedade Rodrigues, known professionally as Carmo Rod, was an Indian singer, playwright, and theatre director known for his work in Konkani films and tiatr productions.
Wilson Vincent Mazarello, also known as Wilmix, is an Indian singer, writer, playwright, and politician known for his work in Konkani films, and tiatr productions.
Maria Conceicao Cardozo e Dias, known professionally as Jessie Dias, is an Indian actress, and singer known for her work in Konkani films, khell tiatr, and tiatr productions.
Lourenco Alexinho Fernandes, popularly known as Lawrence de Tiracol or Larry, was an Indian singer, lyricist, theatre director, playwright, and engineer who worked on the Konkani stage.
Anil Chandrakant Devulkar, known professionally as Anil Kumar, was an Indian actor, producer, theatre director, and playwright known for his work in Hindi, Konkani films, television, khell tiatrs, and tiatr productions.
Andre Antonio D'Souza, known professionally as A. K. D'Souza, was an Indian playwright, director, actor, composer, singer, and sailor known for his work in tiatr productions in the 1950s.
Tito Matias Estefanio Preto, known professionally as Titta Pretto, is an Indian comedian, singer, composer, and playwright known for his work in Konkani films, and tiatr productions.
Regina Fernandes was a Goan theatre actress known as the first lady of the Konkani stage. The wife of Goan playwright João Agostinho Fernandes, she first took to the stage at the age of 24 in her husband's theatro Batcara, which was staged at Gaiety Theatre in Bombay on 22 November 1904.
Maria Vital Fernandes, known professionally as Betty Ferns, is an Indian actress and singer known for her work in Konkani films and tiatr productions.
Costâncio Lucasinho Caridade Ribeiro was a Goan playwright, theatre director, actor, singer, and composer known for staging the first teatro Italian Bhurgo on 17 April 1892 in Bombay. Known as the originator of Konkani tiatr, he also staged the first teatro at Assagão, Goa on 1 January 1894.
João Thomas Fernandes, known professionally as Thomas Coogan, was an Indian composer, singer, theatre actor, theatre director, and playwright known for his work in tiatr productions from the 1940s to the 1950.
L.C.D. Braganza, known mononymously as Rama, was an early 20th-century Goan playwright known for his work in tiatr productions. His popular tiatr Maurice and Juliana vo A Real Love Story (1910) had a significant impact on Saib Rocha, an early Konkani playwright, who later became a leading producer and director in the Konkani theater scene. Braganza, along with a few other tiatrists such as Karachiwalla, F. X. Fernandes Douglas, Rogaciano D'Souza, and Affonceka, played a crucial role in strengthening the foundation of Konkani tiatr during the 20th century.