August 7 - Ms. Meena, formerly Asha, returns to her native village Pichampuram after two decades to make her final film. She is now an iconic film star. In the intervening years, Pichampuram has descended into a state of dire poverty. With news of Ms. Meena’s arrival, there is a new burst of energy and hope in the village, and she is hailed as their saviour, while Ravi, her former lover, now a prominent shopkeeper, is pushed to appeal to her on the village’s behalf. After all, the villagers reason, Ms. Meena must still harbour some ‘feelings’ for Ravi, mustn’t she?
Ms. Meena arrives in state and pronounces her verdict. She will make the entire village prosperous beyond their wildest dreams. In return, she demands a terrible price.
This play has been made possible with the support of the Goethe-Institut and Pro Helvetia — The Swiss Arts Council.
Perch is an active theatre collective based in Chennai. Its first project was a three-week-long festival in January 2008 called ‘Under the Mangosteen Tree’, to commemorate the centenary year of the Malayalam writer Vaikom Muhammad Basheer. Since then, the two plays that were part of the festival, ‘Moonshine and Skytoffee’ and ‘Sangathi Arinhya!’ (Have you heard!), have travelled widely. In early 2010, Perch staged ‘Ki Ra Kozhambu’, a story-telling performance based on the folktales of Tamil writer, Ki. Rajanarayanan.
Venue: Sir Mutha Venkatasubba Rao Concert Hall
Time: 7.15 p.m.
Directed by: Rajiv Krishnan
Inspired by 'The Visit' by Friedrich Durrenmatt
Language: English and a smattering of other Indian languages
Duration: 100 minutes
Rajiv Krishnan says: Our focus has been on keeping the play compact, visually interesting, entertaining and accessible to the audience.
Ms. Meena: Asha Karuna Amarnath
Ravi: Anish Victor
MLA Thambidorai: Bittu Sachin Gurjale
Priest/Somu: Anand Sami
School teacher/Reel Radhika/Mohan Raj: Malavika P.C.
Constable/Thyagu Veeresh M.P.M.
S. Omanakutty/Film Director: Anushka Meenakshi
Michael Chengappa/Madan: Iswar Srikumar
Script: Rashmi Ruth Devadasan
Costumes: Kaveri Lalchand
Props/Set: Kalpana Balaji & John V. Mathew
Lighting: John V. Mathew, Kalpana Balaji, M. Natesh & Anish Victor
Choreography: Aparna Gopinath
Stage Manager: Anjana Raghavan
Photography: Tarun Saldanha
Backstage: Team Perch