The show started with our first glance at The Life Studio, the place done up in lanterns, candles, spare furniture and filled with the voice of Adolf Hitler speaking with his characteristic energy and verve; started transporting me.
The performance was set in the World War II era, specifically the last days of the War; in a nation ruled by the Nazi Party. It was simply a chance meeting and conversation with a Man who has faced persecution from and lost his wife to the Gestapo; a chance meeting at a Bar.
The best thing about the whole performance was that it didn’t get jingoistic, or self righteous, didn’t condemn Hitler, praise anyone else, no right, no wrong. Just a very personal account of a normal Man.
The first part of the performance was a recreation of the Gestapo’s random check at the end of World War II era, powerful and energetic. But what really took my breath away was the mono act by Girish Pardesi.
His act was a monologue, technically speaking, but it lead me to talk to myself, listening to him. Made me forget everything and mesmerize myself into the small and big things in life which mean so much to us but hardly get the attention. Girishji’s act also affirmed to me, my notion that theatrics isn’t noise , colors, sounds, loud and big. All of it is a part of theatre, but essentially it is the deep connect that the artist can quietly develop with parts of you unknown to him, but very intrinsic to you. Potent emotions like grief, loss, fear, love, yearning can and are all expressed essentiall
y quietly. With a change in tone, break of voice, that sudden break in breath, silently expressed; but all these as unnatural as an earthquake. Emanating from disturbances within a man as powerful as clashing of seismic plates.
For the duration of that performance, I was only listening to him, forgot the seating, the others in the audience, the heat, the dim lighting, everything. What an evening!