Quoting William Shakespeare, “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players: they have their exits and their entrances, and one man in his time plays many parts, his acts being seven ages.” On World Theatre Day, theatre artists turned television actors, currently seen on various shows on &TV, share their undying love for theatre and their fond memories. These include Vibhuti Narayan Mishra (Aasif Sheikh) and Manmohan Tiwari (Rohitashv Gour) of Bhabiji Ghar Par Hai, Daroga Happu Singh (Yogesh Tripathi), Rajesh Singh (Kamna Pathak) and Katori Amma (Himani Shivpuri) of Happu Ki Ultan Paltan. Aasif Sheikh, aka Vibhuti Narayan Mishra, comments, “This day is a celebration for those who can see the value and importance of the art form. Theatre helps to promote social discourse, dialogue and potential social change. Theatre is a cultural phenomenon that demands that society examines itself in the mirror. My experience with the art form has truly been a mesmerising one. While I take pride in the fact that I have stepped foot in both films and television, my roots lie in theatre.” Rohitashv Gour, aka Manmohan Tiwari, shares, “Theatre is where I was born. It is like home to me, and I will always have an emotional connection to it. Coming from a small town, we participated in dramatics in school. It was the most expressive one can be without being vulnerable. I found it to be a hidden power and fell in love with theatre instantly. This World Theatre Day, I would like to congratulate the entire industry for making it so far!Yogesh Tripathi, aka Happu Singh, comments, “My journey began with Lucknow theatre. Learning from the stalwarts of theatre gives me immense respect for this industry. The showcased plays had a very typical style of performing, and the genres back then were restricted to comedy, romance or suspense. Nowadays, the genres are more evolved, with drama, rom-com and topical issues doing the rounds. I will always be grateful to the theatre as it gave me my first role in the television industry and made me who I am today.” Kamna Pathak, aka Rajesh Singh, shares, “Today on World Theatre Day, I recall so many memories. This one time, I forgot the lines of my dialogue, but instead of using Hindi, I spoke in Urdu. The entire team had a hearty laugh once the play was over. Those were the golden days of my life, from sharing the stage with seasoned artists such as Saurav Shukla and Manoj Joshi to working with M.S Sathyu Saab. I consider myself truly fortunate. Theatre as a medium has evolved quite a lot. Earlier it was mostly Indian drama and mythology, but today we have an array of wonderful pieces.Himani Shivpuri, aka Katori Amma, adds, “Theatre is the oldest form of art and is very close to me. Having spent my early days of a career working with amazing personalities such as Surekha Sikri and Uttara Baokar has been a wonderful learning experience. I still remember the day I was performing Desdemona, a character from Othello, in a small village; we were worried if the rural audience would understand Shakespeare. But to our pleasant surprise, the villagers watched our play with pin-drop silence throughout, with applauds coming in at the right places. It made me realise how much we misinterpret people living in the interiors of India. Theatre is ever-evolving!”