Making Theatre Accessible

Gillo Theatre Repertory
Gillo is a Mumbai based theatre repertory that works exclusively in Theatre for Young Audiences (TYA) which includes content development, performance and training. We perform short and full length plays for children of different age groups.
We have produced two plays for children - Suar Chala Space Ko (2010) and Kyun Kyun Ladki (2011). These plays have been staged for schools and the general public in Mumbai, Pune, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad and New Delhi. We have also performed short plays based on popular contemporary storybooks.
Our facilitators conduct a Saturday drama club for children, as well as short duration theatre workshops that engage children with the theatre arts.
Our advisory board includes Shyam Benegal (Film maker), Nalini Chugani (Educationist), Shama Zaidi (Screen writer), Atul Tiwari (Theatre Director and Screenwriter) and Ramu Ramanathan (Playwright).

Our approach has included:
  • Developing and showcasing original Indian content
  • Creating performances sensitive to age-specific needs of children
  • Taking our performances to multiple venues across India
  • Making theatre more accessible to children by taking performances to schools
  • Making theatre that is inclusive and accessible to children with different and special needs
  • Creating ways of interacting with the audience and going beyond the performance

We are just 2 years young and still developing our approach and establishing our base. At this early and very crucial time we require your support to strengthen our craft and our practice. We particularly need support in our research and training projects that will help build our repertory as well as our content and idiom.

Over the past year we have taken small steps to make theatre accessible to children who otherwise do not have access to theatre performances, including under-privileged children and children with different abilities. In 2012 we would like to expand this outreach and we seek your support in making theatre more accessible and inclusive.

In the past over 600 children from NGOs like Prerna, Salaam Bombay Foundation, Salaam Baalak Trust, Asha Pune and other organizations have experienced our performances. In 2012 we would like to extend this experience to more children.

Our target for 2012 is to invite 50 children for every performance of our full length plays at theatre venues across India. The tickets shall be paid for by supporters like you. As a special add-on we shall provide free educational kits (in Hindi and English) related to the play and organize interaction sessions between the children and our actors.
You can choose to support: 
10 children (Rs.2000/-) OR 25 children (Rs.5000/-) OR 50 children (Rs.10000/-) at a scheduled show

In our past collaborations with NGOs, very often it is difficult to bring more than 25 to 50 children to the theatre. So to make things more accessible, we want to take our performances to the children in their community. In this way we can provide such experiences o more children and in their own space.
In 2012 we have a target of staging a performance or a story-telling every month. So we are looking at support for 12 short performances to be staged at balwadis, activity centres or community halls, in collaboration with NGOs working for under privileged children.
You can choose to support: 
Story-telling session (Rs.2000/-) OR Short Performance-cum-interaction for 50 children (Rs.5000/-) OR Short Performance-cum-interaction for 100 children (Rs.10000/-)

We firmly believe that as a performing arts group working exclusively for children and young people, it is imperative that we also create platforms to take theatre to children with different abilities. This would include improving access to our full-length performances as well as creating special performances and engagements designed for their different abilities.
In 2012 we are producing short performances that shall be specially designed for an audience that is hearing impaired or visually impaired or has other abilities. These performances will include activities for multi-sensorial stimulation related to the story of the play, depending on the specific needs of the audience group. So a staging for blind children will bring in objects they can touch and more musical elements that will create the space of the story being performed. A staging for hearing impaired children will include more non-verbal forms like mime and movement along with sign language interpretations and so on.
For 2012 our target is to collaborate with 6 institutions in Mumbai and visit each twice through the year.
You can choose to support: Story-telling session (Rs.2000/-) OR Show tickets for 25 children (Rs.5000/-) OR Short Performance-cum-interaction for 50 children (Rs.10000/-)

From the outset, our creative process has included extensive lab work as well as a pedagogical approach which helps in creating age-specific performances. Part of this has been possible by way of workshops and interactions with experienced and established practitioners as well as with guidance from experts in education and child development. We have founded a repertory of 12 adult performers who train and work with us through the year.
In 2012 we would like to make this a more intense and regular process and for this we seek support towards our R&D fund.
You can choose to support: Research / Training / Performance Development

Details to be sent with your contribution
Email id
Postal address
Mobile / Landline number
Occupation / Profession
Select your contribution amount
§  Rs.2000/-          
§  Rs.5000/-          
§  Rs.10000/-
Select what you would like to contribute towards
§  Access For All
§  Theatre in the Community
§  Supporting Inclusion
§  Research, development and training
Cash / Cheque                  Cheque no.                                                        Bank

Cheques should be made in favour of 'GILLO MEDIA'
(As our public trust registration is still under process, this year we are unable to give any tax exemption towards your contribution)

Postal address: Gillo, 4 Sagar Sameep, Kishore Kumar Marg, Juhu Tara, Mumbai 400049. Ph: 9167000458

Some responses to our work
In today’s day and age to find a new theatre group that sets off to create professional theatre just for children and young people is astounding! And then to discover the vigour and earnestness with which this young theatre group GILLO is embarking on this journey is inspiring to say the last!
I wish GILLO all the very best in its fabulous journey towards developing serious yet delightful theatre for children.
- Sanjna Kapoor (Co-founder, Junoon / Trustee Prithvi Theatre)

Shaili Sathyu is one of the few in the city who works devotedly for and with children. She does theatre that is heart-warming, entertaining and thought-provoking. Her Barsoram Dhaadake Se and Suar Chala Space Ko are examples of plays that understand how to communicate with children.
- Deepa Gahlot (Head of Programming at NCPA, Mumbai)

In a scenario where children spend hours before their TV sets or computers, Gillo's play "Suar Chala Space Ko" came as a refreshing intervention. The remarkable thing about it was that the children had participated in conceiving and scripting it. To perform a play that they owned before packed houses and be applauded for their efforts must have shown them how different theatre is from virtual reality.
 – Shanta Gokhale (Renowned Writer & Journalist)

It is absolutely delightful that Gillo has been established as a group dedicated to creating theatre for children. Such an effort was necessary - to create a professional theatre of standard for youngsters to see ... and Gillo has made it very clear through their initial production - Suar Chala Space Ko…. All we need to do now is support their endeavours in any and every way possible.
Sameera Iyengar (Co-founder, Junoon)

Gillo attempts to retain the edginess of story-telling through a range of experimental stage adaptations.
They are working with a pool of young actors; trying to take risks and more importantly, also trying to build minds. "Ramu Ramanathan (Playwright)