Forget love, it's a season of comedies
The city this past week was host to two high-pitched comedies - "Chainpur Ki Daastan" and "Kambakht Ishq". They offered just a mixed bag, feels ROMESH CHANDER.
WE HAVE just had two high-pitched comedies from companies that in the past have given us some commendable plays but this time both missed the bull's eye.
Dramatech's presentation of Ranjit Kapoor's "Chainpur Ki Daastan" based on Nikolai Gogoi's hilarious comedy, `Inspector General' and directed by Amitabh Srivastava while retaining the storyline of Gogoi's evergreen comedy gives it an Indian colour. In "Chainpur Ki Daastan" we see Ranjit Kapoor's mastery in the art of adaptation and his word play at its best. It is perhaps for the first time he has invented names that are indicative of their character. For instance Doctor - Zalim Singh, Khan Sahib - Bemarouvat, Kotwal - Biragi, Judge - Tarafdar, Bholaram - Bhulakkad who always forgets and then there is Tamanna Begum, and so it goes on.
The action is set in a small town of Chainpur where every one representing the government is corrupt. The action begins with the Postmaster Jigyasu, who reads every letter before it is delivered, telling his friends that the government is sending a secret officer to investigate the state of affairs in Chainpur. The corrupt community leaders like the Postmaster, Police Inspector, the Doctor and the ex-tangewalla now turned Khan Sahib Bemarouvat get together to plan their strategy against the officer and his two assistants who in reality are conmen who have escaped from jail. As the action moves forward Ranjit Kapoor creates some delightful situations that bring the house down.
Language and treatment
The presentation as a whole is a mixed bag. While most of the cast seem to be new, the two seasoned actors Sanjiv Chopra and Renu Chopra as usual live their roles well.
What the cast needs is more rehearsals but the production even as it stands today is well worth a visit for Ranjit Kapoor's treatment and his language. The play is on the boards again from April 15 to 17.
Scenes from "Chainpur Ki Daastan" (right) and "Kambakht Ishq".
In the last seven years Natsamrat with 24 plays and more than 370 shows has made quite a name for itself. It has a trademark of its own, loud comedy that caters to popular taste. Its latest production "Kambakht Ishq" directed by Shyam Kumar is built around Radha and Kishan and their respective children Leela and Jai. Radha is always complaining she has a heart problem and Kishan of deafness in one of his ears whereas their common doctor is sure that there is nothing wrong with either of them. They fall in love and meet surreptitiously. The children are embarrassed for their parents have become a scandal point of the neighbourhood and at times we have most amusing and embarrassing situations both for the children and their parents when the plans misfire.
Radha and Kishan decide to get married but how to break the news to the children? So one day the mother lies to her daughter that she was pregnant. The children decide to get a medical report and of course it was all a bluff. All is well that ends well.
The presentation, like most of Natsamrat's productions, is very loud but the audience loves it. One has no objection to popular theatre but surely Natsamrat must remember that its "Raddha Rosey Rukshana" that one saw some years ago was a delightful comedy that won prestigious awards without playing in its usual loud style and yet drew large audiences.
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Chennai and Tamil Nadu