BWW Review: ONCE UPON A TIME at India Habitat Centre, Delhi
A set of five short stories that precariously examine and study the intricacies of human relationships were recently presented in the capital city of Delhi. The play titled, Once Upon a Time, stands out for the simplicity with which relatable tales are told. Five short stories as if depicting a leaf from the audiences' life form the subject matter of the play. The tales of every day life, though seemingly set in routine settings are loaded with powerful messages. The audiences in a short span of one hour were able to go through emotions such as love, desire, anxiety, fear and longing. The stories told through the medium of poignant performances by theatre actors were tiled Sharifan, The Classroom, Last Letter, Twenty Questions and Ek Lamha.
Sharifan tells a touching story set at the time of Indian partition. Based on an original story by the legendary storyteller Saadat Hassan Manto, the characters infused life in a tale that is extremely important to the people of the subcontinent from that generation. Another short story from the series titled The Classroom, is a great depiction of a rarely told story - that of what goes on in the mind of teacher undertaking her first class. The story told in a fun format is a must see for all teachers and students and is based on an original story by Sutapa Basu. The third short story titled Last Letter is a heart-rending tale of a father writing his last letter to his beloved daughter on her birthday. The easy flow of emotions shown in a natural setting forms the highlight of the tale. It is a depiction that makes you feel indebted to your parents. The third of the series titled Twenty Questions is an amusing view into the concept of arranged marriages. Ek Lamha is the story of a poet finding his muse and his emotive response to the situation.
The incredible performances managed to enthrall the audiences and the format of short stories worked well in terms of keeping the pace of the play entertaining and intriguing.
Venue- India Habitat Centre, Stein Auditorium.
Date- 9th April 2017
Language- English/ Hindi