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Thursday, June 30, 2022

On the Record: Look Who’s Talking

A soldier, a real-estate broker, an American Desi and a Nobody have a direct chat with audiences about their experiences in the play One on One-Part Two.

Written by Dipanita Nath |
Updated: August 22, 2015 12:00:33 am
talk, theatre, play, Anu Menon, Meil Bhoopalam, Ranjit Kapur, Mahatma Gandhi, The Making of Mahatma Gandhi, indian express Rajit Kapur

He has been Mahatma Gandhi (The Making of the Mahatma) and Byomkesh Bakshi. Now, Rajit Kapur tells the story of Vishal Modi, a man who has turned into ash in an urn and an entry in a file. Titled Nobody, it is among a series of 10 monologues that make up the play One on One-Part Two. The play follows a previous production titled One on One and will be presented by Showhouse in Delhi on Sunday. Kapur, who will join a stellar cast comprising Anu Menon, Neil Bhoopalam, Sumeet Vyas, Shikha Talsania, Zafar Karachiwala and Gopal Datt, talks about the production.

Why did you limit your stories to bite-sized plays?
We have always been fond of the 15-20-minute monologues. We did it four-five years ago (One on One) and it went well. It gives a chance for writers to create short pieces instead of full-length productions. A short story or a slice of life can be included. It also allows different writers, actors and directors to come together in one production, so it brings the theatre community together.

What is the range of stories you’ve included in the play?
We have a bride who is apprehensive about her ‘right’ partner (Dulhaniya); a ticket collector who is frustrated about what is right and wrong (TC Rasbihari), and the story of love on the border from the point of view of an army jawan (Majnu). There is also a broker in Mumbai who is showing clients around and remembers his city and his past. These people and stories surround us in our day-to-day-lives.

Which character do you play?
I am in Nobody, in which a patient attends a funeral. It takes a look at the bureaucratic system. What happens before a body can be brought in? There are rules and rules but do we forget compassion totally?

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Have you directed any of the plays?
I have directed two plays. TC Rasbihari has been slapped and the play is about what happens next. Game, Set(ing) and Match is about an American Desi boy who has to meet a prospective bride but he is far more interested in the investment possibilities in the country.

It’s been several years since One on One. How is the response to the new series?
It has been such that people want us to do One on One-Part Three. And I tell them that we’ve only just opened on August 1.

The play will be presented at Siri Fort on August 23

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