The recently held programme, Tell a Tale, had the audience spellbound as voices brought to life characters from fiction.
The auditorium at Max Muller Bhavan filled up with the happy chatter as they waited to hear the reading from Grimms' fairy tales. This was Tell a Tale by Little Theatre.
A spooky yet welcoming ambience was created with an array of lights, unusual sets and sounds. The old grandmother portrayed by Mrithula Chetlur hobbled on to stage and explained to the kids that the story for the evening was “The Devil and the three Golden hairs”.
In the shadows
The story revolved around a boy who was born with a white mask in a poor village. It was prophesised that he would marry the King's daughter when he turned 21. The angry king buys the boy's parents with gold and silver and sets the boy afloat in the river in a wooden box . The boy is found by some fisherfolk and they bring him up as their own and named him Bhargav.
Twenty-one years later the king finds out about his existence and plots to get rid of him once
Despite all that the king does to make sure the prophesy does not come true, the boy ends up marrying However, through a chain of fortunate events Bhargav marries the king's daughter and is crowned prince. In a final attempt to get rid of him the angry king sends him on an impossible journey — to bring back three golden hairs from the devil's head!
The rest of the story is about how Bhargav makes his way to hell and back in order to accomplish his task.
The entire story was partly narrated and mostly enacted by three actors (well known actor Krishnakumar, Abishek Joseph George and Mrithula Chetlur) They used head gear to differentiate between various characters (feathers for fisher folk, a crown for the King, masks for the other characters such as the devil, Cyclops and so on). They also made efficient use of shadows behind screens to depict certain scenes. The actors moved in and out of characters effortlessly and even maintained the exact voice for each and every character.
The kids laughed and cheered as Bhargav (played by KK) kept them thoroughly entertained with a mix of humour and wit. They came up with suggestions when asked questions to help Bhargav in his journey.
Abishek who played the Devil with a large red mask, made the kids cling onto their parents. The scene with an eerie boat man (played by Abishek) and Bhargav played by KK was a riot, where both actors effortlessly played off each other. Their timing was perfect and they gave a wonderful performance. Mrithula played the devil's grandmother brilliantly.
The costumes were simple: t-shirts and jeans. The lights and sets were efficient and The Little Theatre actors stole the show with a solid performance. In the end the children and adults were roaring with laughter and they left the show wanting more.