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K-Pax is a hilarious story of a mentally ill patient and his delusions

Badarivishal Kinhal’s first full-length theatre production, K-Pax, is about an alien, and his planet. It explores human beliefs, and how rigidly we hold on to them. The play questions the belief of a doctor, and even the audience with this — “What if somebody told you he is an alien?”
The production, which premieres in the city tonight, features actor Prashant Nair in the role of a mentally ill patient named Prot. Suffering from schizophrenia and multiple-personality syndrome, he thinks he is an alien from the planet K-Pax. And the doctor, played by Mohan Ram, has to pull out stops to prove him otherwise, and that he is normal. The play, set in a mental asylum, also explores the history of four other inmates. You will also see a reporter covering this ‘alien’.
K-Pax is an adaptation of On a beam of light, a sci-fi novel by American author Gene Brewer. While Kinhal came across this novel, and its stage script, four years ago, his team at Tahatto theatre group got busy with other projects.
No surprises here, but Kinhal is excited that the play is finally happening. He tells us, “The storyline encourages us to question our beliefs, and be open to new thoughts. We are not taking a clear stance and saying that the patient is not an alien. We are letting the audience decided if the patient is an alien, or not. The play explores the meaning of believing — in empathy, in acceptance, and beyond all, in magic.”
The 32-year-old, also a techie by day, adds, “The play might sound heavy, but it is filled with a lot of humour. ”
Next, Kinhal’s team will start work on a few original scripts, including a mythological drama.
March 18-19 (8 pm); March 20 (3 pm, 6.30 pm). At Jagriti Theatre, Whitefiled. Tickets (`300) on bookmyshow.com
— Barkha Kumari

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