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Three boys and girls in Mumbai share an apartment and a dreama��to make it as actors. They believe their neighbour is a producer who is casting a road company, when in reality he is a chef. Things come to a hilarious pass when the chef runs out of oil, comes to their apartment to borrow some, gets pulled into a play they are staging for his benefita��complete with a murder so realistic that even the police are called in. a�?What Will People Say is inspired by a 1940s American play, Out of the Frying Pan, by Francis Swann,a�? begins director Vaishwath Shankar, who also wrote the script. a�?Being someone who is trying to make it in the entertainment business, I found it relevant. Every decision we make, like taking up theatre full time, attracts the question, a�?what will people saya��. So it resonates with where I am at now,a�? says the 23-year-old who has taken a U-turn from his industrial engineering background to become an actor-director.
60 and counting
A joint production by The Madras Players and Crea-Shakthi, the play kicks off the formera��s 60th anniversary. Earleir, the two hadA� worked together on Mangalam (2013, on sexual abuse) and Agatha Christiea��s And Then They Were None (2014). a�?The Madras Players wanted to start the year on a lighter note. Moreover, they are experienced actors who need young blood and we are youngsters who need the experience,a�? admits Abhinav Suresh, one of Crea-Shakthia��s co-founders.
But age was never a factor when rehearsals got underway. a�?I had a clear idea as to what I wanted from the play and who I wanted in it. Some of the senior actorsa��like Janaki Sabesh and T M Karthika��are people I grew up watching. As for the others, I wrote the script keeping certain peoplea��s strengths and weaknesses in mind,a�? says Shankar, on his third directorial.
Next step
With sets designed by Victor Paulraj of Studio 7 (a�?nothing fancy as the focus is on the actiona�?), the 90-minute production promises to be laugh out loud and full of energy. a�?There is a lot of good young theatre coming out and I believe we have a critical audience in the city. While we may still not be at par with other metros, where even a weekday performance would get packed houses, we will get there soon,a�? smiles Shankar, who wants to try his hand at regional theatre and films, too.
March 6-8, The Museum Theatre, from 7.15 pm. `200 – `500. Details: indianstage.in

a��Surya Praphulla Kumar

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