ART-RIGHT-IS stages a play on societal injustices faced by men
The Penis Monologues by ART-RIGHT-IS throws light on sexual abuse, discrimination and injustice faced by men in the country, for a change. Originally written for an American audience by Jason Cassidy, the script has been tweaked with Indian references to make it more relatable.
“The original script has a lot of references to American sitcoms, old bands and musicians, so I have altered it to suit our audience,” explains Sharmin Ali, founder of ART-RIGHT-IS. The play has been divided into four segments, each representing a different age group, from ages 18 to 55. Over an hour, 18 actors will express their deepest inhibitions, fears and secrets on stage — from a character’s first gay encounter, to an elderly man who lost his virginity to his mother’s best friend to another’s unfaithful wife.
The highlight is one woman in the cast talking about men’s issues from her perspective. “That’s something the audience must not miss,” Ali enthuses. Plus, a jingle about the characters’ first sexual encounters adds a bit of a fun element to proceedings. Working with almost 25 men, Ali says The Penis Monologues came with exciting challenges. “I was trying to give them my idea of the play when they have probably experienced some of the things the plot deals with,” she shares.
She also feels that now is the perfect time to stage it. “I had my own doubts initially but I always felt in India, broken relationships are often blamed on the man which is not always the case,” explains Ali. “Surely, at least 10 per cent of men are not to blame and are decent human beings,” she concludes.
On August 28. 7.30pm. At Kengal Hanumanthaih Kala Soudha,
Hanumantha Nagar. Tickets
(`275) upwards on