Prithvi Theatre has been a hub for theatre in Mumbai ever since it opened in 1978. The cosy, 200-seater theatre has an attached cafe to it, so you can indulge in people-watching over Irish coffee while you wait to watch a play. Here’s what to watch this month.
‘The Unexpected Man’
Written by French playwright Yasmina Reza, translated by Christopher Hampton, and directed by Padma Damodaran, this English play is set inside a train compartment a novelist and his co-passenger are en route to Frankfurt from Paris. They air their thoughts in monologues, hesitating to speak to each other till the end.
When: Tuesday, December 3 at 9pm and Wednesday, December 4 at 6pm and 9pm.
‘Naha Le Re Bhai’
In this Hindi play written by Santosh Tiwari and directed by Piyush Chitransh, a woman wishes to divorce her husband because he refuses to have a bath. The couple gets caught in an unending legal procedure.
When: Thursday, December 5 at 7pm and 9pm.
In writer-director Makarand Deshpande’s Pitaji Please, (pictured above) Sanju introduces his Muslim girlfriend to his father as Swati, a Hindu. He fears his conservative father will disapprove of him dating a girl from another community. Read our review here.
When: Friday, December 6 at 6pm and 9pm.
Epic Gadbad is a Hindi comedy, written and directed by Makarand Deshpande in which a woman plans her perfect wedding. However, plans have a way of going awry.
When: Saturday, December 7 at 6pm and 9pm.
Writer-Director Makarand Deshpande’s latest Hindi work Ram is the story of a tramp who claims he can speak with Ram. This makes Ram bhakts pretty angry. Read our review here.
When: Sunday, December 8 at 5pm and 8pm.
The Symphony Orchestra of India performs Vivaldi, Bach, and Hadyn.
When: Monday, December 9 at 8pm.
Ira Khan directs this English version of Euripedes’ classic Greek tragedy. Enraged that her husband Jason cheated on her, Medea avenges herself by killing their two children and his lover.
When: Tuesday, December 10 at 8.30pm, Wednesday, December 11 at 6.30pm and 8.30pm, Thursday, December 12 at 6.30pm and 8.30pm.
‘Khajoor Mein Atakaa’
A man tries to escape a mob and stumbles upon a scheme to cheat a lawyer in this Hindi drama directed by Hanif Patni and written by Jairoop Jeevan.
When: Friday, December 13 at 9pm, Saturday, December 14 at 6pm and 9pm, Sunday, December 15 at 5pm and 8pm.
This edition of Udayswar features flautist Pravin Godhkindi.
When: Sunday, December 15 at 7.30am.
Watch this Hindustani play to know if a family struggling with organised religion will turn towards or away from it when faced with adversity. WRITER, DIRECTOR, LANGUAGE? MENTION THAT THIS IS THESPO PLAY. LINK TO OUR THESPO POST.
When: Tuesday, December 17 at 6pm and 9pm.
Writer-director Amrith Jayan’s silent play Baksa is inspired by Wolfgang Kohler’s book, The Mentality of Apes. The play explores the patterns of obedience and questions the limitations of compliance.
When: Wednesday, December 18 at 6pm and 9pm.
‘Sane Ani Company’
Sane Ani Company is a Marathi play written by Jaywardhan Khot and directed by Devendra Charankar. Set in the twentieth century, at a time the sangeet natak was being replaced by realistic drama, the play hinges on a theatre group that faces flak for being rebellious. The play is a part of Thespo.
When: Thursday, December 19 at 6pm and 9pm.
‘Agni Aur Barkha’
Writer Girish Karnad’s Agni Aur Barkha is a Hindi adaptation of his Kannada play Agni Mattu Male. Set in a drought-stricken area, this multi-layered narrative of lust, love, power, and vengeance. Read our review here.
When: Friday, December 20 at 6pm and 9pm.
‘Story of Space’
Writer and co-director Saurabh Nayyar’s Story of Space is a science fiction play in English and Hindi. It is set in a time when the earth has been polluted and children are sent to the moon for education. A father-son duo is en route to the moon when the father falls into a black hole and lands into his past. His son follows but finds himself in his future.
When: Saturday, December 21 at 11am and 3pm.
Hungarian playwright Fritz Karinthy’s Refund is adapted in Hindi and directed by Avneesh Mishra. It is the story of a distraught middle-aged man who blames his school for his failures.
When: Saturday, December 21 at 9pm.
‘Hanumanji Aa Rahe Hai’
Written by Makarand Deshpande and directed by Amogh Phadke, Hanumanji Aa Rahe Hai is and English and Hindi play set in Mumbai. It is the story of a kid who’s irate over the destruction of illegal hutments by the municipal authority. He hopes that Hanuman, the monkey god from a temple nearby helps them out. It turns out that the temple is illegal too.
When: Sunday, December 22 at 11am and 3pm.
Written by Saurabh Nayyar and directed by Ghanshyam Lalsa, this English and Hindi drama follows a ten-year-old child who likes poetry and finds it difficult to adjust to a new environment every time his father gets transferred. It helps to have a secret friend by his side.
When: Tuesday, December 24 at 11am and 3pm.
Written by Adhir Bhat and directed by Akarsh Khurana, Dhumrapaan is a Hindi comedy set in the smoking zone of an office where people discuss office politics, appraisals and relationships.
When: Tuesday, December 24 at 7pm and 9pm.
‘Jungle Book 2 – The Beasts Attack’
Writer and co-director Lokesh Rai’s Jungle Book 2 – The Beasts Attack is a children’s musical in English and Hindi. Mowgli grows up and returns to human civilisation. However, the lessons he learned in the wilderness are put to test.
When: Wednesday, December 25 at 11am and 3pm.
‘Bade Miyan Deewane’
Bade Miyan Deewane, written and co-directed by Imran Rasheed, follows a rich, eccentric 80-year-old. He falls for a young woman, who is also his son’s love interest.
When: Wednesday, December 25 at 8.30pm.
‘Ganpati Bappa Morya’
Writer-director Chitransh Pawar’s play Ganpati Bappa Morya in English and Hindi is a children’s play that delves into the notion of god.
When: Thursday, December 26 at 11am and 3pm.
‘Haye… Mar Dala Re’
Written and directed by Chitransh Pawar, this play in Hindi is an unusual love story.
When: Thursday, December 26 at 7pm and 9pm.
Written by Javed Siddiqui and directed by Salim Arif, the Hindi play Hum Safar is a poignant story of a broken relationship.
When: Friday, December 27 at 9pm.
Salim Arif’s directs Carlo Collodi’s beloved children’s story of the puppet Pinocchio.
When: Friday, December 27 at 11am and 3pm.
Written by Javed Siddiqui and directed by Salim Arif, Gudamba is a monologue by Amina in which she narrates the story of her life, starting from age 18 when she was married into a conservative Muslim family. This tender, funny, solo-act explores the woman’s perspective on the choices she made.
When: Friday, December 27 at 6pm.
‘What Planet Are You On’
Based on French psychiatrist Pierre Pichot’s work, director Akarsh Khurana’s English drama What Planet Are You On hinges on Homi, a kid tackling attention deficiency disorder.
When: Saturday, December 28 at 11am, 3pm, and 7pm.
In this English and Hindi children’s play written and directed by Trishla Patel, a group of kids takes a field trip to a forest, which is home to a tribe. During their visit, the kids must save a tribal boy, who has vanished, the forest and an endangered wolf.
When: Sunday, December 29 at 11am and 3pm.
Written by American author and playwright Joseph Heller, Catch 22 is a satire on World War II. It follows Captain John Yossarian, a US bombardier pilot and his team as they fulfil their duties while struggling to stay sane. This English play is directed by Trishla Patel.
When: Sunday, December 29 at 7pm and 9.30pm.
Writer-director Om Katare’s Hindi children’s play Magic If follows Chulbul, a gadget-savvy teenager. He’s lazy when it comes to studies and hopes for miracles to rescue him.
When: Tuesday, December 31 at 11am and 3pm.
‘Jeene Bhi Do Yaaro’
Jeene Bhi Do Yaaro is a Hindi drama written and directed by Om Katare. It dwells on a family in which a father thinks his kids are up to no good. They, on the other hand, feel their dad is too out-dated to understand them.
When: Tuesday, December 31 at 8pm.
For more plays at Prithvi Theatre, see here.