A tragedy to the world of ‘tiatr’ in Goa

The ‘Tragedy King’ of the ‘tiatr’, Mario Menezes, passed away yesterday morning. He will be sorely missed…
Mario Menezes in his tiatr 'To Porot Yetolo'
Mario Menezes in his tiatr 'To Porot Yetolo'PIC COURTESY: Mario Pires

Chinchinim-based Mario Menezes was a noted actor, writer and director of the tiatr stage. He was known for his tragic roles on the Konkani stage, and hence the title ‘Tragedy King’.

Menezes’ style of delivering dialogues on stage was unique and unbeatable. Over the years, his tiatrs revolved around family and social issues, and at the end, he always carried a message to his lovely audience.

Mario Menezes in his tiatr 'Dev Konn Hindu, Kristanv, Musolman
Mario Menezes in his tiatr 'Dev Konn Hindu, Kristanv, MusolmanPIC COURTESY: Mario Pires

After a couple of years, having staged a good number of tiatrs under the banner ‘Menezes Theatre’ , Menezes thought of bringing out a children’s tiatr which had child artistes, belonging to the tiatr fraternity.

The children’s tiatr titled ‘100 Percent’ evoked a good response from the audience, and Menezes was able to cross 25 shows of his unique production in the cities. Apart from a fine presentation and message, it provided a good platform for many child artistes to step on stage and showcase their God-given talents.

Mario Menezes in his tiatr 'To Porot Yetolo'
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Menezes’ last production, after the pandemic, was Thank You, which completed 25 shows in various villages as an Easter release. It was well-appreciated by the audience as it carried a message very relevant to the present times, taking into consideration the loss of lives across the globe due to the pandemic.

According to Mapusa-based Afonso ‘Bond’ Braganza, Mario Menezes made his entry as a young artiste in the late Fr Freddy J da Costa’s tiatr, Doxea, in 1981, followed by the late Rosario Rodrigues’ tiatr, Maka Jieunk Diat, in 1982.

“We were young in the Konkani stage during that period of time,” informed Braganza, “and we both met each other for those noted tiatrs. Gradually, we built a good bond and rapport. It was a bond that lasted till the end. His untimely death is a great loss to the tiatr stage, but may he enjoy eternal peace in Heaven.”

“Incidentally, his last tiatr was a Thank You to the Goan audience,” Braganza continued, “Yes, Mario, thank you for everything. You entertained us. Made us laugh and made us cry. We will never forget your inimitable style of saying ‘Thank You’, with hands raised up and a smile dangling through your lips.”

Mario Menezes in his tiatr 'To Porot Yetolo'
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Lately, Menezes had been shouldering the responsibility of vice-president of the Tiatr Academy of Goa (TAG) and he had many plans under his sleeve, for the growth of tiatr. Joining hands with the president of the TAG, Menino Fernandes, the duo had set out to work on many issues pertaining to tiatr and the tiatrist community.

UK-based Agnelo Lobo said that the news of the passing away of Mario Menezes was very shocking. “He was truly a wonderful person and I pray that God reward him with heavenly bliss. He will be missed forever on the Konkani stage. The beautiful moments shared with us will be cherished forever and will always speak of the great person that he was, on stage and offstage,” he concluded.

Under one of the TAG’s literary schemes, Mario Menezes had recently published and released two of his tiatr books, namely Mhoji Maim Mhoji Dusman and Hie Chukik Bhogsonnem Asa? His tiatrs, published in book form will remain forever as a treasure-trove for generations to come.

Mario Menezes in his tiatr 'To Porot Yetolo'
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