Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Bollywood and Shakespeare!

Guest Post from Nora Manca of Storefront Shakespeare

My name is Nora Manca, I am the Artistic Director of Storefront Shakespeare, a theater company near Chicago, IL. I am a big fan of Emma's and I was thrilled when she asked me to write a guest blog for her while she takes care of her new little one!

I am currently in the planning stages for a production of
As You Like It, and we're making it Bollywood style!

I have always liked the Bollywood dance numbers I've seen, so big and elaborate with beautiful, rich colors and elegant dance moves.
This is one of my favorites, it is from the Bollywood film
Devdas an amazing, epic, beautiful movie (you really must see it). Here Paro (Aishwarya Rai), sings about how eight years ago she lit a lamp for the boy she was in love with when he went away to school and how it has stayed lit since then, no matter what happened to it.

I am very lucky to be working with the team of Meetal Dave as choreographer and Tony Rifas-Mitchell as song writer, they have the tough job of taking moments from the play and turning them in to big song and dance numbers.

A good example of what they're working on is the film Bride and Prejudice, director Gurinder Chadha along with choreographer Saroj Khan and the music team Anu Malik and Craig Pruess took the classic Jane Austin story Pride and Prejudice and turned it into a Bollywoodesque film by placing it in modern India and adding fun and colorful Bollywood dance numbers. One of my favorites is one of the simplest ones, where it is just Lalita (Elizabeth in the book - played by Aishwarya Rai) and hers sister, who are teasing her because she seems to have won the affections of obnoxious Mr. Kholi (Mr. Collins in the book - played by Nitin Ganatra).

I'm very excited to find out what we will wind up creating. That is one of the great things about being a director, you get to have ideas like "I love Bollywood music videos... wouldn't As You Like It be great Bollywood style?" and then you tell your ideas to people "I want this type of music at this moment in the play to have this kind of feeling..." and then they go and make it happen and you get to see this really cool collaborative creation that came out of your idea.

Well, I hope you've enjoyed this little slice of Bollywood! Have a beautiful day!
P.S. Congratulations Emma on the birth of Peter Gerard!


  1. This is super cute! Great inspiration :)
    I'd like to share with you that I’m participating in an Art competition by H&M I’d really appreciate if you vote for my work. I found out about the competition just two days ago and I need as many votes (stars) I can get until tomorrow. Thanks for your help, it means a lot to me! To vote you just need to click on the 5th star on the right side of this page:
    Vote for my work here
    Thanks a lot!!!

  2. Bride and Prejudice is one of my favourite flicks. Check out a Canadian bollywood movie called "Bollywood/Hollywood". Its lots of fun!

    Congrats on the wee addition!! Adorable!



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