About Benaka

Benaka” theatre troupe was founded by the legend and the pioneer of amateur theatre in Karnataka by B.V.Karanth in June 1974.  From the very inception, Benaka has been staging Kannada plays dramatising the dynamic nature of socio-cultural, democratic and political scenarios, which paved the way for Benaka to emerge as an amateur repertoire consolidating minimal facilities without any external financial assistance but pooling the resources among the participating members. 

“Benaka” has been performing all over the country even during the fourth decade of its existence with major productions to its credit.  “Sattavara Neralu”, “Hayavadana” over 500 performances and “Jokumaraswamy” over 200 performances, “Kattale Belaku”, “Tabarana Kathe”, “Hamlet”, “Kage Kunitha”, “Yamaranjane”, grand revival of Pu.Ti.Narasimhachar’s poetry in play “Gokula Nirgamana”, the master piece of the director B.V. Karanth, Kuvempu’s “Chandrahasa” with original music by B.V.Karanth and directed by Pramod Shiggaon and “Aahata” – a one-man show by T.S. Nagabharana written by Dr.H.S.Venkatesha Murthy apart from a host of other plays are Benaka’s prize productions featured to a packed audience every time.  In 2007, Rangashankara and Benaka produced Shakespeare’s “Romeo Juliet” in Kannada translated by G.N.Ranganatha Rao and directed by Vikram Kapadia. 

“Benaka” is proud that a number of artists of national and international fame in theatre, television and cinema trace their roots to Benaka. Staging all plays directed by B.V.Karanth and sharing Karanth’s theatrical experience with the theatre lovers and establishing a theatre school “Guru Karantha Ranga Shala” in memory of theatre legend Karanth and presenting five plays a year are the major agenda of Benaka.

Benaka celebrated its traverse through 4th decade drama festival in Bangalore comprising an “Exhibition”, “Featuring three popular plays”, “Karanth’s theatre style a Conference”, “A Rendezvous for Benaka members round the globe” and release of a Souvenir.

Benaka, led by its founder-member T.S.Nagabharana, was invited by Association of Kannada Kootas of America (AKKA) to present plays and theatre music in America.  The audience there enjoyed and appreciated Benaka’s performances. “Nangyako Doubtu”, a play in “company drama” style, written by B.R.Lakshman Rao and directed by Pramod Shiggaon is featured by Benaka as the latest addition to its theatre experiments. "The play Manto by Manto" , has been devised around the controversial and tragic life of Urdu Writer Sadat Hasan Manto . One of the greatest short story writers of his era, Manto’s life took a drastic turn during the unfortunate partition of India and Pakistan in 1947. play written by Suman Jadugar and directed by Suman Jadugar and T S Girish.

Benaka artists are carrying B.V.Karanth theatre music and theatre tradition to different parts of India and other countries as well. Benaka completing its 42nd year journey, ever struggles to breathe, nurture, inculcate and spread “theatre culture”! A bunch of young talent along with the whole team have presented  "Harishchandra kavya" a work of 12th century great Kannada Poet "Raghavanka". Designed and directed by "Sri K G Mahabaleshwara". Story of Raja Harishchandra is a well known plot to our nation and art lovers in the world. We have heard, learnt, and studied about his stance towards truthfulness. "Harishchandra charitham" work of Raghavanka being the earliest works on Raja Harishchandra in kannada literature.

"Harishchandra charitham" has undergone through lot of analysis and critics by very well knowns like Rashtra Kavi Kuvempu, prof. Venkanniah, Prof G S Shivarudrappa and many more. A standalone among all the critics of recent times is of Prof. G S S who points out to the secularism view of Raghavanka a 12th century poet.

In the Year 2017 again the team of 24 artist have taken up the project of “ Bheemayana“, the story of Bheema, one of  the character from Great epic story of Mahabharatha. It’s kind of self analysis along the life journey of Bheema. Designed & Directed by National award winner Mr. Sripada Bhat.