Their hands hold no lollipops but brooms; their pockets have no chocolates but chakkus. Films, television, cricket and football, are not meant for them. Their elusive childhood is marked by their own street lingo and culture, which they enjoy and are happy with. Drawing our attention to the lives of the street kids of India, is a play titled 'Bhaag Oliver Bhaag'.
Slotted to be staged today at Epicentre, Gurgaon, the play is a Hindustani musical adaptation of Charles Dicken’s classic novel, Oliver Twist.
"The play aims to draw our attention towards the condition of street kids, who are unfortunately ignored by many. It's a very sensitive issue," says Sarita Vohra, director and writer of the play, adding, "We wanted to present it in a way that people enjoy and at the same time also get the crux of what we are trying to say."
The play revolves around the life of an orphan named Oliver, who escapes from Delhi and eventually lands in Mumbai. In Mumbai, he finds himself in a pick-pocket and robber's den, where he is exploited and taught to steal and slog. He gets his first lesson in pick-pocketing, and is caught for a theft he hasn't committed. This lands him in police custody. And then, there's an unexpected twist!
"I have introduced new characters to script to make it more Indianised and contemporary," adds Vohra.
The action packed, fun-filled 90 minute performance will see 30 characters performing on the stage. What is more interesting is that the play sees three generation of artists — children, adults and senior citizens. Shivam Sahni, 10, plays the character of Oliver.
Catch it live
What: Bhaag Oliver Bhaag
Timing: 7.30pm onwards
Where: Epicentre, Apparel House, Gurgaon
Nearest Metro Station: Huda City Centre on the Yellow Line