Mukabhinaya Art of India :
India is land of rich culture and tradition. It is known for its several art forms which date back to ancient India. One of such art forms is the Mukabhinaya. Mukabhinaya, also known as ‘Mime’ is the art of characterizing scenes from life by the means of facial and bodily movements. Its history dates back to ancient times and is usually considered as the oldest form of theatre. Not only in India but also in other parts of world Mukabhinaya existed in various forms. Greece is one of such countries where mime was pretty common in older days. In 467 BC there used to be a legendary actor named Telestes in Greece who acted in the play called ‘Seven Against Thebes’. In France Gaspard Deburau can be credited for silent ‘Pierrot’ pantomimes, in which the performer used to perform the act with a white face.
In India Mukabhinaya started in an unorganized manner in 1924. Rabindranath Tagore came up with the idea which resulted into a mime production of his play called Arup Ratan (Formless Jewel). Later in 1960, Jogesh Dutta who was the famous Indian mime gave his performances. He was hugely inspired by and influenced by Marceau. He later established Jogesh Mime Academy in Calcutta. Some of the significant mime performers of India include Irshad Panjatan, Bunty Paintal, Awanti Chawla, Alok Roy, Irfan Asgari and many more.
Mukabhinaya is considered to be one of the most difficult art forms in theatre. One of the most important aspects of Indian Mukabhinaya is that it tells stories which are basically connected to the Indian reality of daily life. In today’s world of several languages, Mukabhinaya has managed to survive as an art form without words or speech which is understood by common man easily. This art of Mukabhinaya can therefore be very efficient standard of mass communication, which can help in raising awareness on several social problems and issues.