Fri, 19 Apr, 2019

When (body) language becomes the word

Miming is an independent art in itself, though not many devote their life in following it, however Drupad Gaonkar is one such talented artist from Goa who wants to take miming to the next level and make it a part of our everyday events

09th September 2018, 02:42 Hrs


It’s a silent speech - an interaction without words, a dialogue without verbal communication. Though Indian forms of art, especially classical dancing, includes miming to a great extent, unfortunately, miming as a form of independent art, has not gained much popularity as yet. There are a handful of mime artists in India, Goa boasts to have one of them - Drupad Gaonkar aka Blip. A trend-setter Drupad has to his credit 8-hours non-stop, 24-hours non-stop and 50-hours non-stop mime, the last accomplished this year in February which set a world record.   

This world record holder in miming has performed a 50 hours non-stop miming marathon to commemorate Auroville’s 50th birth anniversary in February 2018 at Auroville in Tamil Nadu. Better-half Ulrike Burghardt, is the support that helps him to conquer such feats. “Without her much of my work would look like a Herculean task,” he admits. This 38-year youth wears many hats - that of a dancer, an actor, a street animator, MC, a researcher and a mime artist.   

Drupad’s body had gone too far that it took almost 7-8 hours after the record, to actually rest. 

“The practices of asana (yogic physical postures), pranayama (control of life force - breath), dhyana (meditation, concentration and consecration of mind) can give us the tremendous focus, strength and energy to go ahead in uniting us with our essential true nature and its goal. Indian classical dance deals with these pranic things. Prana is the bridge between mind and matter. Those who wish to study the art form of mime must first learn any of the Indian classical dances, which have an in-depth understanding of the human psyche and the processes mentioned,” suggests Drupad.   

Having an artistic and analytical mind with an inclination towards both technical and artistic fields, Drupad is thankful to his parents due to whom he inculcated the habit of reading and experimenting. 

“It is not nice to force people into learning without understanding how to learn. I search for virtues in others and absorb them in my thoughts, which subsequently give me a clear direction to work upon. I am able to think and be out-of-the-box with the unique freedom to study anything I wish. This helps me to touch various fields that seem opposite in nature. As I don’t fit into the box of today’s education system, I am free to take up any job, I am good at. Believe me, I have worked in resorts, malls and an ad agency, in engineering, coding and as a graphic designer too,” he shares.   

Passionate about promoting street animation, Drupad is currently a researcher at Sri Aurobindo International Institute of Educational Research in Auroville and also the director of Mooladhvani Institute of Movement and Expression (MIME). 

He is also the founder member of Bharatiya Mookabhinaya Natya Maha Sangha (Indian Mime Federation) and the Mime groups IMIMEGINATION (all India) and MAUNAM (Auroville).   

Drupad is currently working on performing ‘Savitri’ Sri Aurobindo’s 24000 line epic English poem in mime. He has already performed the author’s note of the poem and three of its passages. He considers this his main work which will help him in the creation of a new grammar for mime and will at the same time give the impetus to move towards all that is ‘Silent’.   

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