Are We Losing Out on Theatres in Pune?

Today Pune has become one of the most sought after places by the youth not only in India but also abroad. Pune is a hub of top educational institutes, thus attracting a lot of young scholarly enthusiastic from all over the world. Not only this, Pune is also famous for incorporating best night clubs in India and magnificent malls.


As a result Pune is now highly influenced by western culture and tradition and has lost its primitive culture and tradition unlike cities like Mumbai, Kolkatta, Chennai, Ahmedabad etc. This is the prime reason why we are losing out on theatres in Pune.

In past few years, a significant decline has been observed in the audience interested in theatre plays in Pune. Whereas in Mumbai, Delhi and Kolkatta theatre plays are still successfully run with significantly large audiences. This audience generally includes local people of the city whereas in Pune more than 65% or 70% population is from outside Pune which is more interested in spending their free time in night clubs, pubs, movie theatres or malls rather than in watching theatre plays.

The plays in India are generally famous among various regions in their own regional language. This could be another possible reason for the failure of theatres in Pune i.e. language barrier. Since most of the crowd is from outside Pune, famous Marathi plays receive a very poor response in Pune unlike Mumbai where Marathi plays directed by experts like VishnupathBhave, Vijay Tendulkar,AlyqueePadamsee etc. result in theatres flooded with people. One of the leading play director once said, “You have to do lots of rehearsals and make all the plays qualitative because Pune theatre audience is way too sharp, intelligent, critical and highly discursive about theatre.”

When talking about the most famous and successful theatre plays, Bengali plays performed in Kolkata undoubtedly grabbed the 1st position and then came Marathi plays shown in Mumbai. Few months back, even Pune was in competition with Mumbai, but soon it was defeated by Mumbai due to ignorance of the Gen X.

Some of the theatre companies and groups that have been successfully running in past few years in Pune are Swatantra Theatre, Fireweavers, Sifar etc. Other famous theatre personalities in Pune are Vishnupath Bhave, Chandrakant Kale, Laxmi Narayan and Machhindra Kamble. But now even they feel that Pune audience is losing out on theatres. It has been reported recently that commercial theatre companies are highest in Kolkatta with 3000 amateur groups registered, second is Mumbai with 500 groups, Chennai around 50 and Delhi is left with only a few dozens. On contrary, Pune has only 13 registered groups.

The future of theatre is threatened by the film world. Radio and Broadcast media did help in popularizing Theatres through regional and national broadcasts, soap operas and TV serials over a period of few years. But from the latest reviews, critics and reports on theatre we could clearly see that Pune is surely losing out on theatres but this is soon going to spread in other parts of the country, if necessary steps are not taken to secure theatre in India. It is really sad that a city like Pune which was once considered as a perfect fusion of modern and traditional culture is losing out on one of the most traditional ways of entertainment i.e. Theatres.



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About Shalini Pal

Shalini Pal is a 19 year old girl who is a freelancing fanatic and is currently pursuing Bachelor’s degree in Media Studies from Symbiosis Institute of Media and Communication (UG). Presently, she is an amateur writer who is working hard and striving to become a skilled professional. She was born in Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh but did her schooling from one of the top cities of India, i.e. Ahmedabad, Gujarat. She loves reading novels, writing, cooking and sketching. Listening to music is one of her favourite pass times. She aspires to become a media professional, preferably a journalist in future. She wants to bring about a revolution in the society with the power of media, to make it a better place to live in.


  1. abhijeet Choudhary says:

    Theatre/ Acting needs 100% even 99.9 % cannot work here.

    Are You…?



    Good Observer

    Good Learner






    Down to earth.

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