Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte's romantic novel, is about to get a Bollywood makeover. The acclaimed writer Deepak Verma has put the finishing touches to a musical version of the novel, which is set in the wilds of the Yorkshire moors, transposing the quintessentially Yorkshire love tale to the deserts of Rajasthan and swapping Victorian snobbery for India''s strict caste system.
Wuthering Heights talks of the tempestuous love affair between Heathcliff and Catherine.
Verma and the Tamasha theatre company are collaborating on the project, which will debut at the Oldham Coliseum next March before touring Britain.
"It is not like putting a square peg into a round hole," the Telegraph quoted Kristine Landon-Smith, Tamasha''s artistic director, as saying.
"I thought of the harsh landscape in the original book, and if you put some swelling Bollywood music behind it you already almost have a Bollywood film. It just felt to me that it was a perfect match. There are points where the emotions get so high that they have to sing instead of speak. It''s natural why it should be a musical,” Kristine added.
Although Tamasha has already transposed the works of Emile Zola, the French novelist, to an Asian setting, this is the London-based company''s first attempt to marry a musical to classic literature.
Kristine said the production will have a "moody, Chekovian feel. But we''re not going to go too far," she told the Sunday Herald.
"The production has to meet some of the expectations for a feel-good Bollywood musical,” she added.