A legacy on stage

Updated: May 23, 2020, 08:30 IST | Prachi Sibal | Mumbai

To celebrate its 65th anniversary, a Chennai theatre group is making its plays from over the years available for viewing online

A still from Out of Order. Pics courtesy/The Madras Players
A still from Out of Order. Pics courtesy/The Madras Players

The Madras Players, a Chennai-based theatre group is celebrating its 65th anniversary. While each year, the group premieres a new play on the occasion, the lockdown has egged them to embrace the digital medium. As such, through the month of May, they are hosting an online festival bringing back recorded versions of some of their popular plays over the years including Julius Caesar, Chudamani and Water. The three plays that have already been screened will return in June along with a tribute to Girish Karnad, who spent his early theatre days with the group. Here are a few you can catch this month.

Midnight Hotel

A play commissioned by The Madras Players to author Sreekumar Varma and directed by the late Mithran Devanesan, it is a spooky tale set in a hotel in Pondicherry, complete with special effects achieved using lighting by designer Victor Paulraj.

On May 23 and 24

A still from Out of Order. PICS COURTESY/the madras players
A still from Midnight Hotel


Adapted from the original by John Patrick Shanley with the same name, Doubt is set in a convent in North East India. Directed by Michael Muthi, it features powerhouse performances by old timers from the group like PC Ramakrishna and Indrani Krishnaier.

On May 28, 29 and 30

Out of Order

A farce by British playwright Ray Cooney, Out of Order features an ensemble cast of young and old members. Directed by Nilakantan N, it tells the story of a junior minister's affair with a secretary from the opposition party.

On May 25, 26 and 27

The Readings

Besides plays from their rich archive, The Madras Players will also make a live digital debut with some readings on the Zoom app. Veteran actors PC Ramakrishna, Mohamed Yusuf, Shankar Sundaram, Tehzeeb Katari, TT Srinath and Shaan Katari Libby among others will read from a selection of texts.

On May 24, 6 pm

Log on to The Madras Players on YouTube

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