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Bollywood style puppetry strips the industry

art-and-culture Updated: Jan 04, 2014 18:32 IST
Chetna Dua
Chetna Dua
Hindustan Times
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If you thought that puppet shows were for children, you may have to think again. The New Year looks to spring up a few surprises, starting with a puppet show for ‘adults only’. Titled, Bollywood Bandwagon, this puppet show, being performed next weekend in Gurgaon, is a satire on the Hindi film industry — with the complete filmy drama that happens on and off screen. “We often see adults accompany children for a puppet show, but we wanted to break this cliché. This show is only for adults, with a serious, satirical story about Bollywood and its deep dark secrets, including the casting couch and a striptease scene,” says Anurupa Roy, founder-managing trustee, Katkatha puppet Arts Trust.

The hour long show has two parallel stories running side by side. First is a typical masala Bollywood film — about two brothers, a common love interest and a villain. But there’s an equally relevant side track about what goes into making of a film — the struggle to get a role, insecurities of actors, pressure to look good on screen, the numerous cosmetic surgeries, and the fakeness behind the screen. “People often put popular Bollywood actors on a pedestal. But this show brings out their human side, with their different quirks, emotions and lifestyle. Most of the stories are hilarious, some are sad, but all of them are true,” says Choiti Ghosh, co-scriptwriter and puppeteer.

Even the puppets used in the show are not the regular hand or rod puppets. These are humanettes — human faces with puppet bodies. “Since Bollywood is expression heavy, the humanette displays the perfect mix of facial expressions and mobility of a puppet body — like flying off. The big faces with small bodies almost give a grotesque caricature look to the puppets,” adds Roy.

But if it’s Bollywood, how can the song and dance routine be far behind? Be ready to clap and sway along with five original songs, including the love ballad ‘Kya Jeena Bin Tere’ and the peppy ‘Jicky Micky’ during the show.

Catch it live
What: Bollywood Bandwagon — Puppet show for adults
When: January 12
Time: 3.30pm; 7pm
Age Limit: Above 18 only
Where: Epicentre, Apparel House, Sector 44, Gurgaon
Nearest Metro Station: Huda City centre on yellow line