The Hindu Theatre Fest 2019 Podcast

What’s the value of a human life, asks ‘Laila and Jamal’ | The Hindu Theatre Fest 2019 podcast

Laila and Jamal , The Madras Players’ latest production, directed by Nikhila Kesavan, is an original stage adaptation of one strand of Manu Joseph’s critically acclaimed novel, Miss Laila, Armed and Dangerous. A building collapses in Mumbai. In the debris is a man who is mumbling something in delirium. It appears that he is passing on the real-time movements of two terror suspects, Jamal and Laila. Elsewhere, Mukundan, a junior intelligence agent, is assigned to shadow this young Muslim couple.


As Mukundan tails them down a highway, the story of Laila and Jamal unfolds engagingly through the words of others – an old politician’s intriguing telephone conversations with a powerful bureaucrat, stinging exchanges between Laila and her widowed mother, eleven-year-old Aisha’s hero-worship of her Laila Aapi, the quiet pain and regrets of Jamal’s old father, and Mukundan’s prolific interior monologues. The plot, set in timeframe of about 12 hours, races on, as every scene connects more dots leading to the big reveal.

Laila and Jamal raises compelling questions about the entire system, and the value of a human life.

Tickets available on and The Hindu's Theatre Fest page

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Printable version | Jul 29, 2021 12:49:05 AM |

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