When their best friends, Harsh (Vinay Jain) and Dia (Tisca Chopra) end their marriage after twelve years, Vikram (Joy Sengupta) and Maya (Perizaad Zorabian Irani), are forced to take sides. But their friends’ yearning for “something more”, something different from what they already have makes them question their own marriage. It sounds simple and quite dull but in performance it’s anything but. Set against the backdrop of an upper middle class setting, two couples take the audience on a journey that will have you hooked from start to end.
The play questions not love, but what motivates people to stay together even after the honeymoon is over. You see yourself as Vikram, Maya, Harsh and Dia and laugh and ponder over their arguments for staying or leaving. But the most important aspect of the play is the portrayal of a couple’s plight at losing friends they thought were in it with them forever.
So what is the key to staying together? The play might offer a sizeable theory for that. No, its not ‘love’… not one of an ordinary nature anyway. And it’s definitely not one you pick up on a weekend in Goa. It’s the kind of love that gets a man in the mood for sex without encouragement in the beginning of a marriage and makes him stay even when he wonders when his salt and pepper sprinkles appeared and sex is just another thing on his wife’s to-do list. But what’s most touching is when Vikram, holds an emotional, pre-menopausal Maya in his arms and reminisces the early years just to distract her from another emotional outburst.
Dinner With Friends is a Pulitzer winning play by American playwright Donald Margulies and director Feroz Khan does a brilliant job at adapting it for Indian audiences. The humor, content and situations might be lost to those who are still just ‘in a relationship’ so I’d recommend you catch it only if you’re about to be committed or have a pre-menopausal wife.