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    SHREK THE Musical premiered in Broadway in 2008. Now Jeffrey Vardon from The Hot Shoe Dance Company presents his version of the same. The musical tracks the lovable ogre’s journey to save Princess Fiona along with his witty and obnoxious sidekick, Donkey. “The production has a cast of over 50 and we rehearsed for more than three months. We have the main characters, Shrek, Donkey, Fiona and Lord Farquaad, plus a chorus of my favourite fairy tale characters,” says Vardon. To make the musical more colourful, he included 20 fairytale characters like Three Blind Mice, Big Bad Wolf, Goldilocks, the Pied Piper, Gingerbread Man, the bunny rabbit from Alice in Wonderland, Cindrella and her sisters, Humpty Dumpty and Red Riding Hood. ‘‘These are some of my favourite characters who land up in Shrek’s swamp and annoy him,” says the director of the musical. With over 15 songs, the musical will be presented at Sir Mutha Venkatasubba Rao Concert Hall.

    Larger than life

    Vardon makes it a point to have massive sets, unique props, extravagant designs and much more. Like his last musical, Lion King, this time too, he promises an impressive set, “We show the forest, the exterior of the tower which is 16 feet etc. The major funds were by the producer of the show, Varalakshmi Sarathkumar,” says Vardon, who has been recently making productions keeping children in mind.

    Live music

    Vardon has tried to incorporate free style dancing in the musical except when the Three Blind Mice tap dance. However the highlight of the show is the dragon which is beautiful and not fierce. “The dragon is completely animated and its head keeps moving,” says Vardon. Talking about the music, music director, Timothy Madhukar says, “out of the 50 actors, about 12 of them will sing live. The 15 songs are what you see in the theatre version of Shrek. It is a mammoth task to produce something that is close to the original. However, the chorus and background score is already recorded,” he says.

    At Sir Mutha Venkatasubba Rao Concert Hall, on October 12 at 7 pm and on October 13, at 3.30 pm and 7 pm. Tickets `300 onwards, at O2 Health Studio. Details: 9884339840

    —Mrinalini Sundar

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