(Last Updated on : 02/04/2012)
Bhanja Kishore Patnaik was a dramatist of earlier time. This dramatist had to compete with Kali Charan Patnaik
and Ramchandra Mishra
to get an entry into professional Oriya theatre. During his schooldays he wrote his first play, Jhada-rati i.e. 'Stormy Night' but unfortunately this is still unpublished. However, his first script for Annapurna Theatre
was Devi in 1945. This one established him as a dramatist. Its commercial success encouraged him to write plays like Jahar in 1946, Benami i.e. 'Anonymous' in 1946, and Tofan i.e. 'Typhoon' in 1949. Manik-Jodi in 1951 brought him fame as a mature author, for artistically portraying the conflict between two feudal families over a piece of land. It was made into a popular film. Again, in Jaya Malya i.e. 'Victory Garland' in 1952, this Oriya theatre personality examined a new field competently. This was with the difficulties of a creative writer. In Agni-pariksha i.e. 'Fiery Test' in 1956, his message was that some scientific inventions meant for human welfare could cause further hazards.
During the 1940s the trio of Patnaik, Mishra, and Gopal Chhotray built a healthy tradition in the emerging category of domestic drama. Patnaik believed in variety and explored fresh areas for his works. Bhanja Kishore Patnaik effectively dealt with subjects like national integration, communal harmony, political issues, sexual equality, superstitions, dowry, the joint-family system and its problems.
A strong belief in ancient heritage influenced his philosophy of life as well. So he suitably and vividly inserted three aspects of Indian tradition i.e. truth, non-violence, renunciation, etc. in nearly all his plays. Like his contemporaries, he followed the principles of stagecraft established by Kali Charan Patnaik. Bhanja Kishore Patnaik's analysis of human relations and behaviour appears realistic. In conceiving a well-knit plot, contemporary characters, and simple, straightforward dialogue he was no less than his peers. But above all he was a traditionalist.
Bhanja Kishore Patnaik died in 1999.
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