Saturday, September 22, 2012

evam's The 39 Steps

The following can be considered a sort of a brief review of Chennai based drama company evam's production of The 39 Steps. The show was held at the Music Academy, Chennai, today, the 22nd September, and it began at 7:30 pm.

Cast: Navin Balachandran, TM Karthik, Renu Abraham & Sunil Vishnu K

Directed by Bhargav Ramakrishnan


When you hear that a play is going to be enacted, a play that has seven score characters, and that these hundred and forty characters are going to be played by four actors, you don't believe the folks who are spreading such mindless dribble. So I went to tonight's show with a pinch of salt at the ready. I was right!!! They were swindlers! There weren't four actors. There...were...(drumroll)...FIVE actors!!! And a Car! Damn shame. Damn dear shame, I do declare.

Setting Poe's law aside, evam's take on the play The 39 Steps was, for want of a better adjective, exciting, exhilarating, ethereal, enchanting, entertaining, elevating, emphatic, ecstatic, and eloquent. And entertaining. Did I mention entertaining?

Preparing a play is a difficult job. the actors have to get their lines right, their interactions spot-on, and, for a comedic play, their comedic timing on notch. The production has to make sure that the lights, props, has to be at the right place at the right time. For simpler plays that move on a a more sedate pace, this is probably easier for a well-oiled unit. For the crazy rollercoaster ride that is evam's 39 Steps, this becomes a herculean job. (Needs better oil, that is.) And you guys pulled it off! Bravo!

The director's (Bhargav) vision was spot-on, and made the scenes come alive. The backstage unit was on the spot, making the show run smoothly. And the four actors did their job to the hilt. Renu certainly did so, quite literally.

Yes, I know, I have blabbered on a tad more than get-this-insane-guy-off-this-wall-NOW limit. But, as a postscript, I reiterate the point I was trying to make tonight at the post-match conference ... I mean, at the post-drama interaction session : that the accents employed were brilliant! TMK and Renu's Scottish were well done, and Renu's Deutsch was, well, wunderbar!

Yes yes, ok, I'll get off now. Don't have to push me you know.