Caferati is five years old. Can’t believe that. It was five years ago that a few writers met beside the sea at Bandra Bandstand and a network of writers was born. So the Caferatii (as we call ourselves) met for the fifth anniversary on the beach of Kihim hosted by the lovely couple Hashim and Priya who run a corporate adventure outbound venture called “ Wanderstruck.”
I attended Dan’s workshop on performing ones writing. Yes, it is important these days to be able to stand before an audience and perform your work. (Even, these days, publishers ask you if you can perform, or, read to an audience.) And Dan being inimitable Dan, was the best person to teach us how to perform. I have been completely floored by his Dastangoi performance at Kala Ghoda and I wonder why such a hugely talented actor is languishing in the depths of anonymity. True, merit is never rewarded in Mother India.
Dan talked of “owning your work”, of “making that much effort to get across a single idea to the audience”, to “remember to perform like an actor, improvise,” to “be a good listener, if you want to be a good performer”, to “believe in the integrity of your work”, to “create the moment the audience will take home with them.” I understand. I understand. I read a piece from “One Hundred Years of Solitude” and the feedback was: “I should improve my accent (my Mallu accent that is)”, “You begin well and then peter out (true, true!)”. I worked on these suggestions during a break and later in the section for performing our own work I read my poem The 8.30 a.m. Train Girl, into which I feel I put every emotion I could muster. The reports aren’t out on that one, yet!
Wild Winds, Priya and Hashim’s bungalow is located right on the golden sands of Kihim beach and we had a whacky time watching the sun, the surf and the crashing waves. The sound of the sea was like music, the sun flitted in and out of clouds producing alternate rain and bright sunshine. What a divine, glorious, satiating day we had in this getaway with a charm all its own along with some people who were the best company.
Today is Onam, so happy Onam everyone!