Pip... pip…play in progress, good theatre does theatre good, let's dream… let's create… let's do…theatre. Together. Basically, let's have fun, seriously.
That's Theatre Y in a nutshell in their own words. Theatre Y is a theatre school based in India that focuses on training theatre and related skills, performances, productions, publishing, projects and basically anything and everything that's got to do with theatre.
December 10 will see a group of Theatre Y folks performing for the very first time in Sri Lanka as part of the International Volunteers Day celebrations organised by the United Nations Volunteers (UNV) Sri Lanka.
Themed 'Expressions – The Rhythm of Life', this year's event will be held at the Lionel Wendt from 5.00 pm onwards and it promises to be an evening of serious fun, says UNV Programme and Communication Assistant Vaani Kulasegaram.
"We're looking at a brighter future for volunteers in Sri Lanka and we hope to send across a very positive message about the concept of volunteerism. It's all about the future," she says. So what exactly is International Volunteers' Day?
Simply put, there's an international children's day, women's day, etc., so why not have a day to celebrate the good work done by volunteers the world over with the sincere objective of making this world a better place?
UNV Sri Lanka Programme Officer Sarah Gleave says that some feel that volunteerism is becoming less important due to factors such as globalisation, but the UNV sees it becoming increasingly important in this day and age.
"People are looking for ways to be more connected with their communities. Now there are things like online volunteering through social networking, etc, and various youth groups are being formed. In Sri Lanka volunteerism is embedded to the system. Last week I was in a small village in Ratnapura where the community had received funds to construct a foot bridge. They had collected funds, devoted their time and labour and constructed a very good bridge voluntarily for evacuation purposes during a flood or landslide," she says.
In addition to the performance by Theatre Y, a music video on Volunteers in Action produced by YA TV in collaboration with USAID and UNV Sri Lanka will be screened at the event, and percussionist and choreographer Ravibandu Vidyapathy and dancers from the Budawatta Dancing Academy will light up the stage. And for the grand finale, the organisers have planned a "collaborative journey by Ravibandu Vidyapathi and Theatre Y, to celebrate a convergence."
The objectives of the event are to bring together local volunteer networks, civil society organisations, business community and government and to raise awareness on the concept of volunteerism and stimulate thinking on collective ways of overcoming challenges for increased voluntary action.