Theatre director, multimedia artist and pedagogue, National School of Drama (India) alumnus Amitesh Grover has created 15 Performances & Mixed-Media Installations, which have taken a total of 85 shows across 6 countries till January 2010. Having completed his MA (Performance Arts) from University of Arts London, UK in 2006, he went on to focus on exploring the live interface between the body and media in performance. With Alex Fleetwood who is a winner of the British Council Performing Arts Entrepreneur of the Year Award he is organizing India’s first social gaming event. To find out more about the British Council Performing Arts Entrepreneur of the Year Award click here. To follow British Council Young Creative Entrepreneur of the Year Award on Facebook click here
His work has been shown in Switzerland, U.K., China, Romania, Oman and India. He is the recipient of numerous awards including SNA (Bismillah Khan) National Award for Theatre Direction (2009), Pro Helvetia Award for Artist Residency (Switzerland, 2008) and The Charles Wallace Scholarship Award, U.K. (2005). He has also been on the jury of TheatreSpektakel’08. At present, Mr. Grover lectures at National School of Drama, India and is a freelance artist.He can be reached at email@example.com
Tell us more about the work you do.
Since I have returned to India, I have been creating live performances which have a huge degree of electronic media in it. I direct for theater, I work with solo performers and dancers. I also create onsite events, durational performances, social gaming events. My interest is in live performances which are experimental in nature. It could mean that using different kinds of media like video, electronic sound, performers and dancers. It could be holding the performance in an outdoor location, a historic site, a street, a park. I also do a lot of promenade shows which means audience travel from one location to another while a performance happens and listen to electronic sound through their ipods or phones.What is social gaming?
People are invited to become players and they games over a digital connection be it Skype, Facebook or their mobile connection. We give them tasks and they compete with a bunch of people in a different city say London to achieve those tasks. Whichever group ends up achieving them first wins the game. These games are very social in nature. We are trying to connect people in Delhi and London in new and interesting games. We have come up with many games that put the people in different situations which will enable them to discover new things about their city, its people having fun at the same time.
How did the idea of having a social gaming event between people in London and Delhi come about?
I met Alex when I was in the UK as part of the CreativeSutra program. British Council had selected young arts entrepreneurs and we were flown to Edinburgh for the conference with artists there. I met Alex and started talking about how video gaming has become so popular on the internet although they are missing the social element. Alex at Hide & Seek is designing many games using digital gadgets around us and I come from a theater background and was interesting to bring social element to digital games. So we thought it would be interesting to use digital games to create a dialogue among people from different cities.
What are your future plans?
I plan to expand and scale up the social gaming event idea to other cities and countries. We could hold such events at many locations in the same city. We are trying to hold this in a much bigger way during the Commonwealth games in October. We plan to have half day long games where people could meet, plays these games for 4 hours as they are given instruction thus exploring the city. We want to expand it beyond India and UK. Our goal is to have a 24 city-24 hour game around the world.
To read more about Amitesh follow his blog. The social gaming event is on Sunday, 11th July 2010. If this event interests you and you wish to participate, drop a mail here <firstname.lastname@example.org> or call 09810497027