Nayanābhirāma: Could you tell us about something about Lord Caitanya's production of Vaiṣṇava drama? Are there any of the plays that you know are still extant?
Prabhupāda: Yes. He was playing Vaiṣṇava drama in His household life, rather in student life, and He was taking the part of Rukmiṇī, because He was very beautiful young boy. Formerly, in our childhood also, we saw in drama there was no females taking part. If there was a female part, the man would be dressed just like a female.
Formerly, females are not allowed. If one has to find out a female for taking part in drama, then he has to find out from other quarters, not in respectable part. Now very, very respectable, educated girls are taking in drama and cinema in India. Formerly this was not possible.
And perhaps in the theatrical performances, stage, that was introduced by Lord Caitanya, drama. But His dramatical performances were limited within the devotees. He will not allow to take part in the performance who is not a devotee. So if our devotees . . . that movie was very nice. That's a good example. If we play . . . train our devotees to present some dramatical performances or movie, I think it will be very successful, because they will play from transcendental sentiment, not for trade purpose. So that will come out very successful. Yes.
In our childhood we had the occasion of taking part in a drama, Caitanya-līlā. I took the part of Advaita, and our friends, others, somebody took the part of Caitanya, Nityānanda. So that drama was so successful, it was unique in Calcutta. Because we were not . . . we were not professionals. I saw from the stage a huge gathering, they're all crying.
(laughs) I was surprised, "Why these people are crying?" You see? It was great successful, because we were not professionals. We were not devotees at that time, but some of us were devotee by family tradition, but not exactly what is actually meant by devotee. But still, because we were not professionals, the drama was so successful, unique.
And there was no female. Now Śacidevī, Śacidevī, the friend who take the part, took the part of Śacidevī, his shoulders were so big, (laughing) so just see. So there was no question of beautiful woman taking part. So still, the drama was very successful. Similarly, when Caitanya Mahāprabhu staged, all the devotees took part: Śrīvāsa Ṭhākura, Advaita, Caitanya Mahāprabhu, Nityānanda and Mukunda and other, all devotees.
Devotee (3): It's said that Nārada Muni delivered the chant to the earth. How was it . . . was it there before he came?
Devotee (3): Nārada Muni delivered the chanting, the Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra, to the earth?Prabhupāda: Yes.