Today morning when I opened my blog, I saw on the right side of the page, under 'Popular Post', a series of posts, mostly about temples, festivals etc.! It was funny. It looked as if I am very religious and write about only temples and rituals/festivals! No, I am not very religious but follow some minimum customs, give importance to festivals, play shlokas in the morning etc. I believe in god/or some super power and strongly believe that if we hurt somebody knowingly, in any way, we will get it back twice. Otherwise, as my nieces often say, I am a 'modern maami'! They treat me as their friend...they are young girls, you know! I am so happy about it!
My son asked me, the other day, if I was interested in attending a play (drama, we call it, here!), The Blue Mug...a play by a Bombay director, Atul Kumar and the actors sounded familiar too. I always wanted to see Hindi/English plays by Bombay productions (now, many of them are coming here, to Chennai too!). I said 'yes' to my son, happily! Then he said it was on Sunday, the Janmaashtami day...! Phooof, my happy bubble burst, 'tuppp'! Then he said it started at 7.30 pm...the bubble of hope began to bloat again! Then I said I will do the pooja as early as possible and we can rush to the theatre! My son and husband started laughing...so much love and respect for Lord Krishna! My sister in law doesn't know even now, in what way I did the pooja...poor Krishna! It was jet speed! I got up early in the morning, did murukku (chakli), Uppu cheedai, vella cheedai etc., drew rangloli with a long line of Krishna's feet from the gate to the pooja room, without talking to anybody! And we made it to the theatre 'on time'!
The venue was an auditorium of Lady Andal school, which is a very old school, in a spacious area, with a beautiful, huge banyan tree (the picture is displayed at the end). I hadn't read any review of the play before. Then it started. One by one, the characters started narrating their childhood, adolescent memories, with slightly dim light focusing on them.
The main story had Ranvir Shorey as an amnesia patient being treated/questioned by his doctor, Shirpa Singh! Ranvir remembers only until he was 20 years old, about what happened at his home in Punjab with his brother, father etc. during the terrorist attack period. The doctor asks him to look at the mirror, which he reluctantly does and shouts that what was visible there was his father, not him. He refuses to come to terms with the present times. He even forgets to recognise the doctor after his narration was over! The language was Hindi with heavy Punjabi accent, but his narration was superb. Though, it was difficult for us to follow the fast Punjabi Hindi, we laughed for whatever we understood! Except Shirpa Singh, I am familiar with others from TV serials and films. The other characters spoke in Hinglish, thank god! Vinay Patakh's (Beja Fry fame) adolescent narration was superb, he is a good actor, we know! Rajath Kapoor had done a good job and made us laugh a lot. I admired Sheeba Chadha who narrated how she dreamed of drinking milk from a bottle with a rubber nipple and tried it too in her teenage...it was a laugh riot in the theatre! I had seen her in a TV serial 'Antaraal' with Om Puri in the main role. It was a very good serial, but was stopped abruptly. I still remember the story!
Does anyone else remember?
All the artists did well in their role, but still, for us, something was missing. The quality was there, no doubt about it. No stage decoration, just focusing lights. The characters were not connected to each other till the end.
In the end, the cast and audience interaction was there in front of the auditorium. The artists looked very tired and interesting questions were not asked by anyone, so it was sort of boring. But, somehow, we enjoyed the evening and laughed a lot!
I forgot to mention one interesting thing...3 or 4 best songs of Hemant Kumar were played in the beginning and I was very very happy about it. I love his voice. And one of his song, Zindagi Pyar ki do char ghadi hoti hai' which was very apt for the 'down memory lane' story theme, was played in between, during the play as sort of background music!
We took this picture during the 'interaction between audience and artists' time. They said that the story is based on a novel called, 'The man who mistook his wife for a hat' (funny title, isn't it?!).
Now, have a look at the beautiful banyan tree at the auditorium:
Edited in the evening: Just shifted the first half of the sentence to the second half and the meaning looks better!