A CONVERSATION ON THE FEMALE BODY
Overyacting by Piumi Wijesundara
Performance and theatre are unique modes of art that bring out the creative cognizant of an artist through the perfectly crafted correlation between movement and vocal acts. ‘Overyacting!’ becomes a theatrical rendition of what is largely deemed a stimulating and refreshing glimpse into society’s consciously overlooked subject pertaining to the female body. Co-directed by Piumi Wijesudara, ‘Overyacting!’ was first performed in 2017 by the students of Methodist College, at the Annual InterSchool Drama Competition organized by Royal College, Colombo. The play, an empowering and educational depiction about menstruation, was recently performed on the 3rd of August at Methodist College, after its win as the Best Play at the 33rd Inter School Drama Competition.
Not your typical stage drama, ‘Overyacting!’ was built from the seeds of the need to educate society and fill the gaps in the system that prevent and place boundaries on the conversation of menstruation. The much silenced and taboo subject, once brought up often instils discomfort in the audience and the sole purpose of Piumi Wijesundara’s directing of this play is to erase any and all modicum of the conventional ban, and with the all-girl ensemble, the play emerged successful in its aim. After working with the cast and students of Methodist College for the past three years, Piumi found that the girls were mutual in their objective to bring to light the topic that this culture was not open to talk about.
‘Overyacting!’ is a production that’s not a typical take on the Sri Lankan community and its perspective on menstruation. The scenes deal with unvoiced and unconventional themes. The play promised a performance of momentous depth in regards to the thematic relevance to society’s take on the need for a change due to the evolution of the community and the approaching cultural changes. We found the play to appear, while humorous in its deliverance, was also an intense conversation on the subject as it follows the protagonist on her journey towards discovering the answers to menstruation and the story behind the reasons for its silence.
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