Thursday, August 20, 2009

North Madras stories that didn't flow . . .

It was my first visit to the Madras Terrace House for the Madras Week.
The House has already become a destination for the young - talks, small acts, exhibitions, concerts. . . . lots happens here.
Kaveri Lalchand, the promoter has strained a lot to also make this a lively place for Madras Day events - a packed week on its calendar.

But Pritham's show on Thursday night was not what this actor is capable of. Wonder if the letdown had to do with a toothache and painkillers.

'Dustily Yours; Stories of North Madras' was Pritham's theme and I expected much from this veteran solo performer. But it didn't come off.

Pritham went in circles on the lives of the bura sahib and the memsahibs and their retinue of maids and men. Yes, she kept coming back to how water has always been an issue since the times the Fort was built. . . but the stories we were looking for just did not flow. . .

And North Madras is a huge bank of stories of all kinds.
Of smart merchants and smarter dubashes, of Capuchin padres and Anglo-Indians, of ruthless killers and hardened fishermen, of colourful entrepreneurs and spirited nuns.

Of landmark cinema halls and Veena Dhanammal and her famed kutcheris, of Burma Bazaar rogues and Telegraph Office damsels.

Or did Pritham have something else on her mind for this show?

Whatever, Stories of North Madras is a fascinating theme.

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