40 years back, ‘tiatr’ was great, the late M Boyer had released this masterpiece with a cast of topmost veterans that included Shalini Mardolkar, Premanand Sangodkar, Rita and Alfred Rose, Antonette, Prem Kumar, Ulhas Buyao, Jacinto Vaz and many others. Fatima and Anil Kumar had later joined the cast and many who saw the show, talk of Fatima’s superb act as the foreign bride. Kala Mogi, Candolim have done a wonderful job, in this reenactment of the same tiatr. The packed audience was in raptures.
The play revolves around a Hindu ‘bhattkar’. He is kindhearted and generous but has a wife who is immersed into casteism and religious division. She wants her family to be pure and when her son wants to marry an equally qualified girl from a lower caste, she sends him off to England. The son returns with a European wife. The tenant’s daughter is a colleague of the landlord’s son. Both are doctors and work in the same hospital. They fall in love but the mother will have none of it. The rest has to be watched on stage, in this tale that lays emphasis on the need of equality among humans, without the discrimination of caste, creed and religion.
A superb script flows smoothly and is directed in style by Tomazinho Cardozo with usage of area lighting by Dnyanesh Morajkar, on the set created by Timothy Dias. The dialogues have a lot of meaning and the intelligent comedy has plenty to laugh about. Late M Boyer was one of the greatest treasures of the Konkani stage. A special mention has to be made of the beautiful songs during the acts. ‘Deva Mhojea Deva’, ‘Zati’ and the others are gems. A well selected cast does full justice to their roles. Pradeep Naik leads with an outstanding performance of the rich landlord. Firm, strong and with a sense of humour too. Superb! Irene Cardozo is great as Xali, the caste conscious wife. Selza Lopes is the European wife, doing her role in great style and so does Dulcin Borges as the doctor who is in love. Watch her render the heartbreaking song in the pre-interval act. Great facial expressions! Anthony Carvalho as the humble tenant, Shivanand Naik as his son and Prasad Mandrekar as the doctor in love, play their roles well. There is good support from Anderson Pereira, Jennifer D’Souza, Marlet Fernandes, Steve Rod and Tomazinho Cardozo. Christopher (Comedian 64) had the audience in splits as the drunk Xavier, with good support from Joaquim Lopes and Selza too.
Vitorino with Mathias lead the big band. Joy Fernandes provides a fine background score. The opening song, a tribute to M Boyer by Steve Rod recounts the achievements of the thespian. There are other vintage songs that include ‘Doti Magon’,’ Kampala’, ‘Bikunn Martole’, ‘Ximitir’, ‘Pai Re Pai’, ‘Aichim Burgim’, ‘Ghou Bailechem Kestaum’ among others and rendered well by Marlet Fernandes, Violet and Jennifer D’Souza, Vhorty Sequeira, Fayzia Fernandes, Maria and Joao Cardozo, Socorro de Sta Cruz, Sheik Amir, T Britton, Tomazinho Cardozo and others. This tiatr is superb; please don’t miss it when it is staged again.