Friday, August 7, 2009

Hyderabad again - we saw 'Mamma Mia' the musical by Indians!

My blog is more about how odd it felt to see us brown skins acting English, Tamil mamis' in western clothes and flirting (Ayyayyoo!) with the young and (made up as) old men! The actors spoke clearly and I could follow the story, well most of it. I am now totally lost unless there is a subtitle at the bottom of the screen when I watch a movie.

While it was an English play, Indian ethos prevailed. The show started an hour late. There was no announcement or apology about the delay for the first 50 minutes. However, the audience was well behaved, no whistles or catcalls! I had heard that Hyderabadis are laid back and they proved it to us here!

To pass the time I studied the ticket very thoroughly. It was nicely made, the size of a post card. There were 12 important regulations printed on the reverse. One of these, children below 10 are not permitted in the auditorium, had already put us in a quandary. We did not know of this rule earlier when we had booked the tickets. Anyway the promoters of the show assured Raxit not to worry, our kids would be allowed!

Another piece of directive on the ticket, no spitting, surprised me! In fact it is also clearly displayed at many locations in the theatre. The theatre is really well made and the tickets are not cheap. The most expensive ones that day was Rs. 5000. I thought surely someone who forks out this kind of money would have better sense than let fly his spittle in the auditorium. Apparently not as per the administrators of the theatre. They probably know better!

I also noticed something which would not be an issue at Bangkok theatres. A lady who was just behind us at the security check line wanted the security guards to hold the ticket for a friend who would be coming half an hour late! Surprisingly the security chap flatly refused to oblige. Quite upset the lady said: 'They said I could give it to the security'. She never explained who they were and neither did the security guy bother to ask! He said 'You can come out after half an hour and wait for her'! I guessed she was getting angrier, not that her tone was either friendly or polite earlier, when she said with her raised voice 'How Can I do that after the show has started?'
I have no idea how it was resolved as we had moved on. Anyway it did not really matter as the play did not start on time. Probably the security guy knew this.

The reason given for the delay later was a winner: 'The delay is due to a technical reason. There is only one security gate and it was houseful!'. Surely it is nobody's fault if the theatre is that full. Mai pen rai (parava ledhu) rules even in Hyderabad!

The sophisticated crowd chatting after the show. I did not catch anyone in the act of spitting!

You could have seen the N's in the melee onstage!

There was a moment when the audience were invited to go on stage to sing and dance. Neil, Nikhil were coaxed by the artists to join them on stage and Nandini went along! They could have been seen if I had taken a better picture. There was a time when Neil and Nikhil were right in front and I missed! It would have been a nice memonto!

I do love musicals but I have seen only two 'Live' ones, 'charlie boy' in 1969 and 'saigon' in the nineties, both in London! So I was really happy to see mamma mia in Hyderabad that too with our desi actors featured in it! I thought they did well.

Raxit who has seen both the movie and the Broadway versions of this play thought that while there was no real comparison possible it was a good effort. tells you more!

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