William Shakespeare’s timeless classics have been adapted for many generations now. Every time one wants to revisit the Bard, it gets rave reviews, and with good reason.
Watch an interesting twist on Shakespeare’s plays at the Shakespeare Theatre Festival directed by Rajat Kapoor, showcasing different plays this weekend. Watch Vinay Pathak, Ranvir Shorey, Jim Sarbh, Tillotama Shome, Mansi Multani, Sheena Khalid, Sujay Saple, Suraj Tomer, Waris Ahmed Zaidi, Chandrachoor Rai and Jashvender Chauhan put up a brilliant performance in Macbeth — What Is Done Is Done on Saturday and a bunch of clowns in Hamlet - The Clown Prince on Sunday.
Known for his acting prowess, Ranvir Shorey reveals what theatre lovers in the city can expect from the plays, “Our production, What is Done is Done, probably has more twists than Shakespeare itself! It’s a take on Shakespeare’s Macbeth but told through our very own patented brand of clowning. We deconstructed the play and recreated it with these dark, scary clowns. But, we’ve tried to keep its soul intact. It’s beautiful to discover that you strip down something written centuries ago, and it still speaks of emotions and conflicts that are relevant even today. That is the genius of Shakespeare!”
Ranvir states he had fun working with the actors, most of whom are his friends. “This is my second play as a clown with the group. I was part of the first clown production, C for Clown, but this is the first time I’m joining a Shakespeare piece with the team. It’s been an enriching experience, especially because along with Shakespeare’s fabulous text to play with, we were also discovering this new, dark and scary clown! It’s a potent combination,” he says.
One of the key actors, Vinay Pathak, who will be seen in all the plays shares, “I’m acting in all the four plays. We have been prepping for six months now for Macbeth. Hamlet and Lear have been very popular, and have been staged across the globe. Nothing like Lear is a one-man performance and adaptation of King Lear, so we wanted to bring it out in its true essence. It’s about the father and daughter and since all three of us are fathers, and incidentally, our children were around us when we were prepping. In the final monologue which is a tragic sequence in the play as well as in our adaptation, when we’re constructing and deconstructing, we arrived at the tragedy at the helm of a 10 minute sequence. Both my daughters (7 and 9 then), started crying, and Atul ran to them and we realised that we were so engrossed in acting, we don’t think about the impact. One starts to speculate how a certain piece of literature leaves an impression, when we encounter such reactions.”
Director of the Shakespeare Fest, Rajat Kapoor who has been working hard at making it all happen, states, “This is the first time in India, four Shakespeare clown plays are happening together.”
Even brilliant actors have to face a few challenges as Ranvir chips in confessing, “Theatre is about time and commitment. Since each of them is challenging, I try and do not more than a play at a time, as I enjoy the process of working on a narrative and performance. Cinema is my first love, but theatre, by virtue of being a live medium, is a challenge.”
Bengaluru-based festival curator and producer, Hardik Sha adds, “Nothing Like Lear was the play I watched and decided some day I will be in show business. The Bengaluru audience is very intelligent and they will love these plays.”
If your friend asks you what are your weekend plans then there’s a lot of fun and games, and of course Shakespeare, for good measure in store!
Macbeth — What is Done is Done, July 2, 7.30 pm, Hamlet The Crown Prince, July 3, 3.30 pm, Nothing Like Lear July 3, 7.30 pm, Chowdiah Memorial Hall...