Monday, November 07, 2005

Bringing Shakespeare to Mumbai

The stage is set once more at a venue as celebrated for its heady Irish coffee as its intimate setting for home-grown theatre. Prithvi turns 27 this November, and presents its 31st theatre festival to Mumbai. This time though, it is a highly acclaimed British company that will take centrestage, and Sanjna Kapoor is more than happy to let her baby be eclipsed by their genius.

After all, it's taken her all of seven years of wooing Simon McBurney, celebrated theatrical maverick for Complicite, to finally come to India (Mumbai and Bangalore) as part of an international tour, with the best known bard's least classifiable work — Shakespeare's Measure For Measure.

Readying the audience was an exercise that began last month, when Prithvi tied up with theatre persons and local colleges to demystify Shakespeare over a series of workshops. "College students are the next generation of audiences," explains Sameera Iyengar, creative director, Prithvi.

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