REVIEW: ONTORDONDO

The play revolves around the protagonist Antar, and his conflicts with his mind and reality.

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This one act play is presented by Stage Eight Theatre Productions featuring debutant actors Soham Chatterjee, Nandita Chanda, Pranit Biswas and also Protishtha Chakroborty.

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Antar, a schizophrenic guy in his late 20’s, lives with his girlfriend Drishti. The play starts with Antar having a session with his childhood friend also his physiatrist Dr.Arshia. It is assumed that he suffers from regular mental tremors for which he forgets the difference between reality and imagination. Throughout the play, all the characters meet Antar, but they themselves never meet each other.

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Dr.Arshia tries to help him recover his illness. It is also revealed that he never had a proper childhood, so much so, that his own mother use to ill-treat him. Because of his difficulty in differentiating between reality and imagination,  and on his doctor’s advice he had “killed” his exes.

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And this time it would be Drishti’s turn. Both his friend Saumik and his girlfriend try to make him understand that Arshia is making him do things instead of treating him. But on the other hand,  Antar is confused if Drishti is real in the first place. She says she suffers from anthropophobia (fear of people/ socialising) and so she never comes in front of others. Not just that, she fails to provide any identity proof or any picture of her existence. Because of this Arshia presumes Drishti is not real, again another of Antar’s figment of the imagination.

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The play is short and crisp with the right amount of plot twist and drama. The actors have done a tremendous job in portraying their characters, especially Soham and Pratishtha. The play is gripping enough for the audience to enjoy and it never drags.

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If anything felt out of place that would be the supporting actor. Being newbies, their job is commendable, yet at parts its too loopy. Although the running time is short, one would prefer it being shorted and more edited. Had it been so, the play would have been just perfect.

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The story is really interesting. Never once have they revealed that Antar is schizophrenic. But it was implied nonetheless. The psychological tremors and physical conflicts portrayed on stage were beautifully choreographed. Sound and lights were just perfect.

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After a long time, we have come upon a play that would make you think even after leaving the theatre. The director has done a good job in ending the play, making the audience more engaged in the story even after it ends.

– Sreya Nath

 

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