‘Don Roste’, the new tiatr from Menezes Theatre, written and directed by Mario Menezes, takes a critical look at the state of unemployed youth in Goa, who then resort to various illegal activities, including supply, distribution and sale of drugs.
A widow has two sons; Kayden is an unemployed graduate while Keith is an engineer working for a construction company, owned by a Tamilian named Nagrajan. Their father was an honest policeman who had died in service. The mother is unwell and a large sum of money is required, for a heart surgery. Keith requests his boss for money. The boss who is also a drug dealer agrees but there is a catch. Keith has to help in the distribution of drugs. After initial hesitation, the love of the mother makes Keith accepts the offer. The surgery is successful and Keith becomes rich through illegal dealings. Meanwhile Kayden gets a job in the police force, on grounds of sympathy for their father. He is posted in the narcotics cell. The rest is to be watched on stage in this interesting tale of good versus evil, a mother’s love, a son’s sacrifice and the sad state of our educated youth in Goa today. There is an influx of migrants in this land, many of whom are up to wrong things.
The play is written well, pointing out many problems our youth are facing today. The future looks quite bleak for some, while those who have the money to bribe end up with jobs they don’t deserve. There is a good blend of tragedy and some good comedy too. The cast has Rosie Alvares playing the mothers role. She portrays the loving mother in a fine manner, with a will of her own. Melisha plays the love interest of the younger son. Francisco is Keith, the son with a heart, yet a helpless one. A wonderful act there! Franky plays the tough cop in style. Mario Menezes is seen in a different role after a very long time. He is very authentic as the loud and aggressive Tamilian.
John Hatts and Bobet make minor entries in the comedy lead by Joana along with Jesus, as the policeman. There is plenty of humour especially in the confrontations between Joana and Mario, Jesus and Bobet and Franky. The police fine people for over speeding, which is correct.
The band has Agnelo (trumpet), Nazareth (saxophone), Blaise (bass) Manuel (drums) and Clinton (keyboard). Rioma renders the opening song well and later returns for a fine trio with Melisha and Rosie. There are other nice songs from Lawry, Melisha, Rosie, Joanna, Tony de Ribandar and others. It is a watchable and interesting tiatr.