Bhubaneswar, Jan 22 (LocalWire) Gopal Chotray, the Chief architect of the modern Odia theatres was born in the Purangarh village in Jagatsinghpur district of Odisha in the year 1916.
He brought about a significant change in the structure and theme of Odia plays during the mid-nineties.
Works Of Gopal Chotray
A pioneer in the history of Odia Drama, Gopal Chotray has played a crucial role in reviving Geetinatya or ‘plays in verses’ genre in Odisha in the late forties.
He dominated the Odia professional theatre for more than three decades.
He was honoured with Padma Shri as well as the Sahitya Academy Awards for his pathbreaking contribution in the upliftment of Odia plays.
His initial works include “ Pheria,” which means comeback in English.
Throughout his life, he wrote more than 15 stage plays along with eight adaptations of famous Odia novels.
The majority of the plays written by Gopal Chotray achieved tremendous success in the stage plays.
The audience used to gather in large numbers just to have a glance at his work.
The theatres in the Cuttack used to hold two shows in a day to stage his plays. His other notable works were the Hasyarasara Nataka.
Other Works Of Gopal Chotray
Gopal Chotray was also associated with the All India Radio (AIR) in Cuttack as an in house script writer till 1975.
Before joining the radio, he used to work as a freelancer. Chotray wrote more than half a thousand plays, which primarily included radio and features.
As a household habit, Chotray used to listen to his works.
The great dramatist eventually scripted over 200 radio plays that made him popular throughout Odisha.
For the first time, he introduced a radio serial, “Purapari Paribarika” produced by the AIR.
With the ‘Sahadharmini’, chain play he marked his entry in the field of scriptwriting and this play was screened in 1942 in Annapurna A Group Theater.
Similarly, Chotray is also given credit for reviving rural opera and bringing it back into fashion.
He authored several books like Sadhana, Nasta Urbasi, Bharasa, Parakalam, Nua Bou, Pathika Bandhu. Sahadarmini (1941), Panchanatika (1993), Na Pahu Rati (1971), Kapatapasha (1989), Hasyarasara nataka (1981), and Babu Candramani (1992).
Awards and Achievements
He is a recipient of several prestigious awards including the Padma Shri in 2002, Sarala Award in 2000, Bisuba Award in 1992, Sahitya Akademi Award in1982, Odisha Sahitya Akademi awards in 1976 and was also honoured with Kendriya Sangeet Natak Akademi Award.
The doyen of Odia Theater dedicated his entire life for the writing of plays, musicals, stories, screenplay and dialogues.
All of his writings focus on Odisan society and tradition.
His autobiography ‘Pathika’ has always held a special place in the heart of book lovers.
The chief architect of Odia theatre, novelist Gopal Chotray breathed his last on 22nd January 2003 in Bhubaneswar.
Editing by Sivangi Dash