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    Promising old favourites and a fresh outlook, Michael Muthu is back with An Idiot for Dinner

    Ita��s been six years since Michael Muthu first directed An Idiot for Dinner for the theatre group, Evam. Well-received wherever it was staged, including Bengalurua��s Ranga Shankara, the founder of Boarwalkers is reviving the comedy for a second edition. a�?It is a lovely script and one of the better comedies Ia��ve come across. I decided to stage it again because there is a new audience out there who hasna��t seen it,a�? says Muthu. Of the 10-member cast, only one actor reprises his role from the originala��Sarvesh Sridhar, who plays Golden Gopu, the idiot. a�?For the rest, I had actors in mind and, fortunately, most of them said yes, including Amit Singh who is back on stage after a hiatus to play the income tax inspector,a�? he smiles.
    Going local
    The situational comedy is an adaptation of the French film Le DA�ner de Consa��about a group of businessmen who bring an a�?idiota�� to dinner once a week for their entertainment. a�?I scripted the 90-minute play with the original (which has also been made into a Bollywood film, Bheja Fry) as a point of reference. But Ia��ve Indianised and localised it, with a lot of Chennai-specific Indian English and jokes,a�? he explains. While the fresh cast brings a new dynamic and flavour, Muthu admits he faced a few challenges. Like finding a girl to play one of the key female roles. a�?I wanted someone between 20 and 23 and it took me almost four weeks to find one. There seems to be a dearth of quality female actors in the city,a�? he rues, chalking it down to lack of options and the fact that many turn to TV and films, never to look back.
    Layered effect
    With a minimalist seta��a�?we have scenes in a park, a railway carriage, a club, and finally at the house, but the changes are all done subtlya�?a��Muthu explains that hea��s tried to keep it real. a�?Therea��s not much of a music track. Ita��s mostly sound effects and some strains at the beginning and the end.a�?A� Promising that ita��s nuanced and that the audience will get more than just laughs, the director, whose last production was Twice Around The Park, says, a�?It is not one of those dead comediesa��it plays on many levels and there are some life lessons that you will learn from it.a�? Next up, he hopes he can travel with the play to cities like Bengaluru and Hyderabad.
    May 16-17, at the Museum Theatre, from 7.15 pm. Rs 200 onwards. Details: eventjini.com

    Surya Praphulla Kumar


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