Padmini Kolhapure and Asrani to perform Baap Ka Baap in Kolkata
In this politically charged atmosphere, where even humour is often ‘tainted’ with acrimony and partisanship, if you crave for a simple and straight-from-the-heart comedy with a social message, then you must book your seats for Baap Ka Baap on February 21. Film and television actor Naveen Bawa is bringing his much-loved play to Kolkata for the first time, after its debut in Mumbai in 2014. Starring veteran Bollywood actors Asrani and Padmini Kolhapure, besides Bawa and Chitrasree Rawat, the play has some stellar performances along with four Bollywood songs that have been sung by Padmini and Asrani among others.
“I got the idea for this play when I was staging my first production, Aasman Se Gire Khajoor Pe Atke with Padmini and Shakti Kapoor in the US. When I read it out to Padmini, she loved it,” recalls Naveen Bawa, who runs the theatre group Ek Prayaas. Written and directed by Bawa, the play will see Asrani, who is fondly remembered for his hilarious act as the jailor in Ramesh Sippy’s iconic film, Sholay, playing Jawan, a widower with a grown-up son called Bachha, played by Bawa himself.
The play lightheartedly deals with how widow-remarriage is still an issue in an enlightened society. Padmini Kolhapure plays Mithai, an otherwise successful and independent businesswoman, who has her own vulnerabilities and struggles as a widow. Comedy ensues when a young NRI girl, Namkeen, reprised by Chitrasree enters into Jawan’s life.
“I love telling serious issues laced with humour, using minimal characters. My first play had three characters, and this has four. I’ve finished the script for my third production, which will be about why most marriages are not working nowadays. I’m also writing the fourth play, where only two characters will play multiple roles. It is a love story at a very odd age,” tells Bawa.
The play is being brought to the city by Leopard Creations, in association with Round Table India and Ladies Circle India, in aid of charity as a part of Stage Door 2020, an annual theatre event. “Earlier we brought plays including The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial and Arms and the Man by Naseeruddin Shah, and Krishna vs Kanhaiya by Paresh Rawal. Baap Ka Baap will see some great performances by Padmini and Asrani,” says Debadrita Chatterjee, owner of Leopard Creations.
“StageDoor has pledged to donate all the proceeds of this event to our trust, for building more schools for the poor. We look forward to more events together,” says Nishant Khetawat, chairman of Calcutta Round Table 17.
Bawa’s first play, Aasman Se Gire Khajoor Pe Atke, had 57 shows between 2007-2013. Baap Ka Baap too completed 58 shows across the globe and will soon head out for shows in Nairobi, Dar Es Salaam and Mombasa, followed by Dubai in March. The technical director of the play is Sattyajit Gazner, while the lighting has been done by Vijay Pandey.
Baap Ka Baap will be staged on February 21, 7 pm at Kala Mandir. Tickets available at bookmyshow.