Goa is highly rich in folk drama forms that narrate, often with songs
and music, the stories of great epics like the Ramayana and the Mahabharata,
and also project relevant, contemporary issues the society or the community
is concerned with.
This earliest form of drama in Goa is supposed to be the precursor of
modern Marathi theatre. There are two forms performed by two different
communities. One form, the Perani Jagar, is performed exclusively by the
Hindu Perani community. The theme tackles philosophical questions like
the origin of the universe in the background of mythology. The other form
known as Gawda Jagar is enacted by the Christian Gawda community in different
villages in Goa in different styles. The theme is derived from the contemporary
A tiatr is a form of entertainment unique to Goa. Not exactly a drama
or a musical drama, it consists of 6 or 7 acts, each of roughly 15 minutes'
duration, called podd'dde, which are interspersed by 2 or 3 songs, solo,
duo or duet, trio, quarter or group song. The songs are unrelated to the
play but based on social, political or religious themes. This mix of songs
and plays makes tiatr popular among the masses. The character of tiatr
changed after the independence. While family quarrels, heavily laced with
Portuguese language and influence, formed the story of tiatr in the pre-liberation
era, social, religious and political themes crept in the post-liberation
period. Khell Tiatr, a derivative of tiatr, performed in villages during
the Carnival, Intruz and Easter in the open ground, differs from tiatr
in that its songs are relevant to the main play.
Some of the other popular folk drama forms are Dashavatari, Goulankala,
Kala, Lalit, Kalo, Ranmale, and Rathkala.