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The 'Unglossy' Side of a Woman's Play: 'Dekh Behen' Creators Get Candid Ahead of Show

'We are living in the time of dreams. You dream it, you can do it', says 'Dekh Behen' writer Tahira Nath.

Rakhi Bose | News18.com@theotherbose

Updated:July 27, 2019, 9:08 AM IST
The 'Unglossy' Side of a Woman's Play: 'Dekh Behen' Creators Get Candid Ahead of Show
After 55 shows in five cities, 'Dekh Behen' is coming to Gurugram this weekend | Image credit: Akvarious Productions

The "modern" Indian woman is someone who doesn’t care two hoots about stereotypes or putting themselves in silos. Correction, the modern Indian "person".

That's how actor and playwright Tahira Nath describes today's woman — not in part but as a whole. And perhaps her play "Dekh Behen" is meant to do just that — personify women as real people, beyond their gender identity. And it does so with an all-woman crew and cast.

A simple search of 'Dekh Behen' reveals a popular ticketing website's description of the Akvarious Productions creation as a "hilarious play about women, by women, for anyone who wants to understand what it’s like to be a woman". But in truth, 'Dekh Behen' goes beyond that. Set across the simple and easily relatable background of a Punjabi wedding hoopla, the play unfolds in soft curves that reveal much not just about women and womanhood but also about social conditioning and society itself.

Nath, the META nominated thespian, describes the play as an "unglossy and behind-the-scenes version of a women's play". And that's exactly what the play tries to do - unpack the "persona" of the modern Indian woman.

It isn't just her successful play that is refreshing but Nath's own take on life and the state of women's equality in the world of theatre. According to Nath, "We are living in the time of dreams. You dream it, you can do it."

Her views are shared by Shikha Talsania, who co-directed the play with Dilshad Edibam Khurana, and who thinks that this is a time when creativity is King. Or Queen.

As far as representation of women in theatre and films is concerned, Talsania feels that we are slowly getting there. "For the past 2 years I’ve been working predominantly with women, so I’d say there is great representation," the actor tells News18.

Talsania, who was last seen in the fiercely female-oriented and much debated film 'Veere Di Wedding', feels that films have always stereotyped not just women but also men. However, there was never any dearth of strong and real female characters. "Be it theatre or films, we’ve always had wonderful stories of women, by women. What is so heartwarming is to see that it’s slowly becoming a norm rather than a celebrated rarity," Talsania states.

After touring five cities and performing the play over 55 times, 'Dekh Behen' is planning to captivate audiences in Gurugram this weekend with its wit and dry humour and a stellar star-cast.

What else do those involved with the play see in their near future?

While Talsania aspires to take the play to more cities across the country, Nath is happy riding the wave of the play's current success.

"Maybe after the dust settles, we can start planning something. ", Nath quips. As for the upcoming show, audiences can expect what Talsania describes it's like to make an all-woman production work: a breeze.

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