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'Makdee' gets ready to scare the UAE.

Summary: An old tale is getting a remake -- just remember most things end well

Image Credit: Karishma H. Nandkeolyar, Web Editor

There is growth on the cards. And redemption. In The Hive and Avega Dance Creatons' latest collaboration, Makdee, playing in the UAE on September 28 at Children's City, a rambunctious teen must go head to head with a witch in order to save her sister.

The play is set in a village with a crone in a cottage. This so-called evil person, it is rumoured, turns all her visitors into animals. When Munni is mistaken for Chunni, her mischievous twin, and chased into the witch's manor, no one believes Chunni. Finally, scared out of her mind, this child must venture forth alone into Makdee's lair.

For 12-year-old Mehr Thakkar, who plays the evil character, it's a performance that has helped her unleash her inner 'beast' all the while learning to navigate unfamiliar territory. "The best part about this production is attempting Hindi which doesn't come easily and fluently [to me]. In fact, given an extract for audition I was not sure I will be able to do justice to the role. I must say with practice nothing is impossible. I am ready to bring on the stage my Hinglish [a mix of Hindi and English]," she says.

The 20-member youthful cast have had an intensive eight-week training programme this summer to put the adaptation of a 2002 movie starring Shabana Azmi together.

But it's not always been easy, explains Thakkar. "Some days are tough when there are rehearsals and HW's [homework] together. I means studying during rehearsals and rehearing between my studies."

As tough as that may seem to a school-goer, it is not without its advantages. Case in point: 14-year-old Shreya Rajesh, who plays a police officer in the show, has learnt life lessons. "The main thing I have learnt onstage and offstage is that every one ... every role, every character is important. Everyone coexists and everyone is incomplete without the other. I have learnt the art of public speaking, the importance of body language in communication and overall to be confident in whatever I do."

Meanwhile, for 13-year-old Nandini Bhattacharya, who plays Kallu, it's meant a personal triumph. "I learnt that whether or not you have a good relation with a co-actor offstage you mustn't allow the audience to get the slightest hint about it on stage."

Hiral Verma, who plays Chunni, explains how the children get into character. "[It's something] we like to call 'The 5 Ws'. The 'Ws' stand for 'who, what, when, where [and] why'. In this [way], we basically break down the character and analyse it... after creating this we present the character and build on it. It's actually a very fun process."

The boy who cried wolf gets a dark update in this dance-drama. Fortunately, there's always redemption at the end of the dark tunnel.


Don't miss it!

Makdee will be staged on September 28 at Children's City from 4.30pm to 6.30pm. Entry is free.

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Publication:Gulf News (United Arab Emirates)
Date:Sep 27, 2018
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