When an award is instituted and given to any upcoming child artiste, it will most definitely encourage many amateur and budding child artistes to come on stage and showcase their musical and theatrical talents.
To mark the 75th birthday of noted tiatrist of yesteryears, Josephine Dias, her son, Arvind Dias, has sponsored an award, ‘Josephine Dias Puroskar’, which is constituted by the Tiatr Academy of Goa (TAG).
The award will be presented on July 19, 2023, at a special function to be held at the multipurpose hall of the Directorate of Art and Culture, Panjim. On the same occasion, a novel, Ema, penned in 1995 by Josephine Dias’ husband, the late FX Dias, will also be released.
ABOUT THE CHILD ARTISTE
The contributions made by Josephine Dias in the field of tiatr are immense. Originally from Colva, but residing at Santa Cruz, she started her tiatr journey during her childhood. Her father, the late Casiano D’Costa was the first to welcome her in his tiatr, Ti Mhoji Maim, in 1962.
Thanks to her theatrical prowess, Josephine was accepted and appreciated by the audiences. In order to boost her singing and acting skills, her father roped her in his second tiatr, Birankul.
Soon thereafter, Josephine found entry into the commercial tiatr, Maim Tum Asli Zalear, by Anton Seferian. Among the different characters she enacted on stage, she has always found herself comfortable in comedy and semi-comedy roles.
Josephine’s participation in tiatrs are numerous, and include six tiatrs by the late Minguel Rod; four tiatrs of C Alvares, Jacinto Vaz and Prem Kumar; seven tiatrs of John Claro, Jacinto Vaz; seven tiatrs of Aristides Dias; two of Mike Mehta, Christopher and F Cardozo; three of Nelson.
She has appeared in tiatrs staged by the late Anil Kumar, Wilmix, Seby Coutinho, Jephis Hilter, Rico Rod, Menino de Bandar, Alfred Rose, C D’Silva, Dioginho D’Costa, Joaquim D’Costa, Mariano Fernandes, Jerry Rodrigues, Greg, Felcy, Premanand Lotlikar, Star of Curtorim and F X Dias as well.
Josephine has also featured in Passion plays which were staged during Lent. Her harmonious voice was instrumental in getting her featured in cassettes by Jr Rod, Felcy, F Cardozo, Socorro de Santa Cruz and Aniceto.
She also made her appearances in VCDs by Peter D’Costa, David, late M Boyer and Casino.
BEHIND THE AWARD
Throwing light on the institution and sponsorship of the ‘Josephine Dias Puroskar’, Arvind Dias said that his mother had given much towards the tiatr stage, and the day had dawned to give something back. The thought of offering this award to child artistes was precisely to encourage young talent on the tiatr stage.
“Children are the future of the Konkani stage and they will take tiatr forward and preserve our Konkani language,” Dias said. “So, budding artistes need to be encouraged. They are already there and contributing much towards tiatr through singing, acting and music,” he mentioned.
With regards to the novel, Ema, penned by his father way back in 1995, Dias said that FX Dias was a Konkani writer and enjoyed penning Konkani novels, besides tiatrs. “He definitely was a good writer and this novel had remained unpublished for several years,” he said.
“After the release, the novel will be distributed free of cost to the audience so that everyone enjoys the creativity of my father,” Dias added.
“FX Dias was a prolific Konkani writer,” informed Arvind. “And, to help lovers of Konkani novels enjoy the literary taste of my father’s writing, thought of publishing his manuscript and releasing it in his memory,” continued Arvind.
“The rich contributions made by several Konkani writers and tiatrists of yesteryears cannot be forgotten or wiped out. They definitely need to live forever in our memories through their literary works and institution of awards in their memory,” he noted as he signed off.
“In order to promote young talent, who have contributed and continue to work for the development of tiatr, its song and music,” the president of Tiatr Academy of Goa (TAG), Menino Fernandes said, “The ‘Josephine Dias Puroskar’ will definitely boost raw talent and go a long way to encourage more amateurs to come willingly on the tiatr stage and contribute towards the growth of our art and culture.
A cheque of ₹ 2,00,000 (Rupees 2 lakh) has been handed over to the president of TAG so as to maintain the corpus fund. The interest earned from the corpus fund will be utilised as the award money.