Tim Supple’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream – a class act

Just got out of the Buck’s Theater (YMCA, Nandanam) after watching Tim Supple‘s brilliant adaptation of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Thanks to the British Council for this effort. It is innovative in many ways – he toured India and Sri Lanka extensively and selected artistes from various local language theaters and they speak their dialogues in their own language. So we had dialogues in English, Hindi, Tamil, Malayalam, Marathi, Bengali and Sinhalese.  Even though, we couldn’t understand many of the dialogues, we could make out the meaning from the context and also the general familiarity of this famous drama helped us to understand. We had the question as to why only these languages were chosen? Priya Raju made the observation that these seem to have a long tradition of theater and also have contemporary forms of theater which are still popular.  I am not sure if other languages have a continuing tradition of theater or not. If any of you agree/disagree, please write a comment. The actors were very energetic and delivered their dialogue with a lot of passion.  If you had expected a  traditional shakespeare drama, you were in for a rude but pleasant shock. Every actor had been chosen carefully and they played their part perfectly. The settings and the props were very creative, including the usage of red mud on the platform. Since the actors were running around and falling a lot, this must have definitely helped cushion their falls. Its an amazing experience to see a group of people perform with such passion and superb coordination. I think the entire audience loved the play, as Tim Supple and his team got a standing ovation in the end. I managed to get Tim’s autograph.  Actor Revathi was spotted in the audience and before I could get her autograph she had left the venue. If you reside in Kolkata, don’t miss this one. Its scheduled for 28,29,30 April, 2006 at the Tollygunge Club Ltd, Deshapram Sasmai Road. You can get free passes from the local British Council Library. Apparently, the 30th April show has already been booked for the schools in Kolkata. So that leaves only 28,29 for the rest. If you reside in the UK, you can see this play June 7-17, 2006 at the Swan Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon. Don’t miss it.