Tell us about the genesis of Dreamz Unlimited. What inspired you to delve into theatre?
-The inception of Dreamz Unlimited came after a forty five day intensive drama workshop conducted in Dimapur by the National School of Drama (Delhi) in 2008. There were twenty six participants from all over Nagaland and at the end of the workshop (which was initiated by North East Zone Cultural Centre), we decided not to let the inspiration die but to continue what we’ve dreamt of doing. So we got together and called ourselves “Dreamz Unlimited”. In the initial years we did a few productions outside Nagaland in theatre festivals under Robijita Gogoi and Robin Das who were our teachers at the workshop. But then it got difficult for the group to carry on as we were all from different districts, while some were still students – it meant that the frequent meetings and brainstorming sessions were now impossible. Gradually the group became smaller in number– some got married, some couldn’t provide time as they had to earn a livelihood since theatre didn’t make a decent amount of income, and some simply gave up. It was natural that I became a part of all this, because theatre has always been a childhood dream.
How long have you all known each other?
-As the group that we are now, it’s been almost six or seven years.
Who works on the scripts?
-Tia: I mostly do the scripting and dialogues, but sometimes the actors improvise and at times our sound guy Along Longchar and cameraman and editor, Imtiakum Aier contribute their ideas during the course of shooting.
What gave you the strength to invest not only financially but emotionally, physically and mentally, on a vocation that many of our people are foreign to?
-The first is “Passion”. And another important thing is “Faith”. I believe that if you work hard and hold on to your dreams however small they may be, it will someday turn into reality. Even when the chips are down in the beginning, you should not give up because at the end, you will see the fruitful results.
Your shows and performances cover and uncover a wide spectrum of topics. It’s inspiring how you’ve opened doors for actors and leave the audience pensive after your performances. How willing were you, individually and collectively, to go where many people would not dare to go?
-I think it has been a matter of following our inspiration more than anything. When we have a point that we want to make, we try to say it through our art.
How are your performances received by different audiences? What is that one compliment you receive the most?
-Our team’s forte is ‘comedy’ and we prepare our scripts and dramas according to the audiences we are performing for. Up until now, the reactions and responses from our audiences have been very heartwarming and encouraging.
One compliment which we receive the most would be, “bishe hashishe the, aru lesson beh shikishe.” (We laughed a lot and we learnt something as well.)