World Tiatr Day

World Tiatr Day celebrated in Goa on Tuesday at Kala Academy


Tiatr is a form of musical theatre that is extremely popular in Goa. It is also popular with Goans living in Mumbai, the Gulf, and even the UK. These dramas are performed mainly in the Roman Konkani dialects. They include music, dancing, and singing. Tiatr performers are called tiatrists. Goa celebrated World Tiatr day yesterday at Kala Academy.

History of Tiatr

The word tiatr comes from the Portuguese word for theatre, teatro. Earlier variations were Theatro, Thiatro, and Tiatro. Tiatr was born in Bombay (now Mumbai) in 1892. It is an art form created by Lucazinho Ribeiro from Assagao in North Goa and João Agostinho Fernandes from Margao, South Goa. They staged and performed the first Tiatr performance in 1892 on Easter. The name of the first Tiatr presented was “Italian Bhurgo” and was written and directed by Lucazinho Ribeiro. If you would like to know more about Tiatr’s origins, read this article.

Celebrating World Tiatr Day in Goa

World Tiatr Day was celebrated in Goa yesterday, the 17th of April. Speaking at the occasion held at Kala Academy, Minister for Art and Culture, Govind Gaude said that Tiatr is the reason that Konkani has become more known. Thanks to the efforts made by tiatrists, various issues in society are now getting the necessary attention.

“Tiatr is the said to be the mirror of society and from the very beginning, tiatr artistes have been working constantly to highlight issues that require authorities’ attention. It is due to tiatr that Goa has developed so much,” said Gaude.

According to him, the Tiatr Academy and Kala Academy have been instrumental in encouraging more people to take part in tiatrs. Gaude said, “All should join hands in taking tiatr to the next level. 125 years back when Lucasinho Ribeiro scripted the first tiatr he had no idea where the tiatr would be today but he carved his own niche in art and I can proudly say that tiatr is one of the first forms of drama that has released its own postage stamp commemorating 125 years. It is a proud moment for the state.”

Veteran tiatrists felicitated on World Tiatr Day

Twelve veteran tiatr artistes were felicitated at the event for their contribution to the art form. 

They are Anthony Fernandes, Minguel Dias, Tomazinho Cardozo, Luis Cota, Milagres Fernandes, Lorna Cordeiro, Domingos Coelho, Thomas Britton, Cesar D’Mello, Francisco Xavier Fernandes, Theodor Alvares, and Jean D’Souza.

On behalf of those awarded, tiatrist Domingos Coelho thanked tiatr for giving them an identity.  He said that the audience of tiatr indeed increased and there is a need to constantly support young talent and encourage them to participate more often and take forward the legacy.

Tiatr personality and guest of honor, Joe Rose also put forth his views on how more and more youngsters are getting into the arena to take the art form forward.

Besides honoring the senior tiatrists, there was also the prize distribution of the 15th Cantaram Competition winners and a short presentation from classic tiatrs.

Other happenings at the World Tiatr Day celebrations

125 years of tiatr is no small feat. Commemorating the occasion, the India Post, Ministry of Communication & Technology, released a postage stamp about tiatr. Goa is one of the first states to have a postage stamp on tiatr said the chairman of 125th Anniversary of Tiatr Celebrations Committee, Tomazinho Cardozo.

“This postage stamp on tiatr will not only be available in Goa but will be available across 1100 centres in India. This was a collective effort and due to the support we were able to achieve our dream of releasing the postage stamp.” A historic moment indeed for Goa.

In addition, Cardozo says that there are plans to also release commemorative volumes on both living tiatr artistes and those that have passed away. “Let’s all work to join hands to make the Goan tiatr the finest form of drama in the country,” he said.

Chief Guest for the release of the stamp, chief postmaster general, Maharashtra circle, Mumbai, HC Agrawal also said that the tiatr postage stamp is unique. “The tiatr stamp is different. We usually print stamps which are either themed on monuments, historical places or eminent personalities. We also have personalized stamps,” added Agrawal.

Hoping to take tiatr to an international level, Director of Art and Culture, Gurudas Pilernekar vowed that he would put in his best efforts to take tiatr abroad through cultural exchange programmes.

Information credit – The Navhind Times