yes folks it's that time of year again - Panto Time! oh no it isn't! Adam got us tickets to Bollywood Cinderella at Tara Arts in Earlsfield, oh yes he did!
The show had been written by Hardeep Singh Kohli & was brill! Here's a description from the program:
"Sunder is the daughter of the Kind of Dil, whose wife died at childbirth. Evil Shanti - a widow with an eccentric daughter, Happy-Lucky - wooed the King to become his second wife & stepmother to Sunder. No sooner had they married then she forced him into exile - to return only if & when either of their daughters were to wed.
Evil Shanti wants to get her daughter married, to keep the Kingdom of Dil to herself. She forces Sunder to slave night & day making chappals (slippers). Poor Sunder has only vegetables for company.
When the neighbouring Prince Raj arrives searching for 'a girl who loves me for me,' he sets in train a series of romantic possibilities. Will Shanti succeed in getting Happy-Lucky married? Will Sunder regain her birthright? Will the prince find his love? And what about Nitin, the Prince's loyal servant...?"
The theatre was tiny, just an end terrace house really, but they'd gone to town making the place Indian-fied with the decorations. There was a huge billboard advertising the show under the railway bridge next door which I think was actually bigger than the theatre itself! After grabbing a drink in the foyer/bar area we went in to the auditorium & we were greeted by benches, a few chairs & cushions on the floor - it only held about 60people so it was a very intimate show!
There were lots of Bollywood influences & puns all through the show meaning it was a great panto in general but even better if you'd seen the odd film beforehand to appreciate all the jokes & actor references. I think it's time to introduce Adam to a Bollywood, better dust off Om Shanti Om & put aside a spare 3/4hours! There was as much colour, singing & dancing as I'd hoped & it left me excited to get back to Mumbai in January. Thinking about it, I'd love to see this show again with a more typical Indian audience that really get into it with the cheering & boo-ing. Our crowd were a bit timid & I started some of the boo-ing in the second half myself, maybe cos it was such a small venue people were nervous to make a sound?! Either that or they were totally engrossed in the show (which is possible!) so didn't make a peep!
Usually this would be the point where I'd tell you to go & see the show for yourselves & enjoy every minute but unfortunately it's sold out for the whole run, apart from a Matinee today. Boo! Who knows maybe they'll put it on again next year, if so you better go!