When Beauty & the Beast are divorced!

This theatrical musical production will leave you confused as well as make you laugh

Rupam Jain Published :  01st December 2023 12:00 AM   |   Published :   |  01st December 2023 12:00 AM
Bhavya Balantrapu and Amson Maurice as Belle and Gaston

Bhavya Balantrapu and Amson Maurice as Belle and Gaston

We have all read/watched Beauty and the Beast. Now, imagine what happens after the spell is broken on the Beast and his castle... While you think, Denver Anthony Nicholas has already cooked up a story and turned it into a theatrical musical production called Belle and Gaston: The story after the fairytale. “The story takes place six years after the fairytale ending... Belle is divorced from the Beast and Gaston has become a rambling alcoholic who is still very much in love with Belle. They meet at a pub in Chennai and chaos unfolds,” says Denver, who has written and directed this play.

Interestingly, the musical romantic comedy borrows characters not just from Beauty and the Beast but also from Archies Comics. “We’ve used Belle, Gaston, Cogsworth and Lumiere from Beauty and the Beast, and from the Archies, we’ve brought in Betty and Veronica. Oh! We also have Cinderella and the sleeping beauty. The thought behind merging them came from wanting more chaos and fun in the storyline. As the story progresses, audiences will realise that a lot of characters fall in love or are in love but haven’t had the courage to express it,” says Denver and insists that the play is “just a fun, nonsensical musical— one of my first short musicals that I wrote in 2017, which has now evolved into a full length, 100 minutes musical.”

Cast during the rehearsals

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It will feature songs in English, Tamil and Hindi, with a little bit of Hollywood, Kollywood and Bollywood. Some of the songs the team has incorporated are Fight song, Roar, Kal ho na ho, and Sollamal thothu chellum thendral. Denver does a lot of musical theatre, and we ask him why. “I love the musical genre of theatre; it never ceases to inspire me. From serious in-depth stories to romantic comedies, it allows me to express, explore, experiment and be creative.”

For Amson Maurice, who plays Gaston, preparing for a role like this was not easy, especially a drunk Gaston! “But the whole process was so much fun. I pushed my boundaries and Denver helped me prep for the role,” he says.

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Before letting him go back to rehearsals, we ask Denver if there is a twist to the plot, and he says, “Yes, come and see who has been in love with whom and why they’ve not found the courage to express that love.”

Tickets at Rs 200 to Rs 1,000.
December 3, 4 pm & 7 pm.
At Alliance Française of Madras, Nungambakkam.

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