Guest Celebrity Blogger: Ishitta Arun's Bombay Talkies Experience (Win Tickets!)

Ishitta Arun , 26 Apr 2012

Ishitta Arun is a talented songstress and has now taken to the stage with a passion for theatre, I’m giving out two FREE couple passes to watch this play tomorrow 9pm at Prithvi Theater, all you have to do is tell me why you love being a Mumbaikar in the comments below! xoxo

Ishitta Arun
Ishitta Arun

“Bombay Talkies: An uncanny, yet inevitable resonance of your life with the uncensored experiences of eight Mumbaikars!”

This is how I’d describe Bombay Talkies. This play has been getting Mumbaikars together bit-by-bit with every show! At NCPA, it was houseful. After an overwhelming response for Bombay Talkies at NCPA, it was time to live up to the audience expectation at Prithvi Theatre too.

Bombay Talkies
Bombay Talkies

Even though Prithvi theatre is like my second home, the zeal and excitement of performing for the audience was giving me an adrenaline rush of that “first time performer”. We assembled at Prithvi early in the evening and started rehearsing our lines, while Vikram Kapadia was busy getting the lights right and positioning each character on stage.

Bombay Talkies
Bombay Talkies

As the evening progressed, we had some funny, notorious and playful moments too. With Vikram counting the transition from one scene to another, the blackout on stage was causing a bit of confusion and collision with our production team, which was hilarious. I particularly remember this section where, after Anahita’s monologue, there is a quick transition and all the actors have to be on stage… there was a bit of a chaos where the props were to be quickly taken backstage and Anahita had to be on stage again… eventually we figured it out!

Bombay Talkies
Bombay Talkies

Thankfully, the character that I’m playing doesn’t have any specific costumes or make-up, so while the others were rehearsing, I would quickly sneak out to the green room and do my own make-up and be ready for the evening. This would leave room for me to practice more and give my best. The only challenging part was folding a sari! I had to practice at least 30 times a day to get it right!

Bombay Talkies
Bombay Talkies

Vikram being a very dear friend and a mentor, I kept nagging and playing little pranks on him during the rehearsals. And being the sweetheart that he is, and for the perfectionist that I am, I wanted to rehearse one last time with Vikram just before the play started and he would brush me off like that kid asking for chocolate!

Bombay talkies
Bombay talkies

So finally the stage was set, I walked toward the terrace to see the crowd that later emerged as a long queue of people waiting to get into the theatre. It was houseful, yet again! Some of the fine actors from the industry were also around to watch. With my heart beating faster, I was prepared to give my final performance. Just the way we had rehearsed. The applause and appreciation with every delivery was very satisfying. There was a moment, where during the interval I had to tie a rope around the background structure; the rope eventually took the shape of a ‘Phasi ka fanda’ (aka noose) and I could hear people reacting to it saying “bechari, suicide, it’s so tragic”.

Bombay talkies
Bombay talkies

With theatre, you have to improvise at every stage, unlike films, there are no re-takes. It’s about how we deal with it all, performing and supporting not only your co-artists but also the technical team. I feel, all these small things make you learn and grow as an individual.

Bombay Talkies
Bombay Talkies

This play is very near to my heart, not because it has been directed by a friend but for the sheer reason that it’s about Mumbai! Every Mumbaikar should come watch!

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