Afsaneh is a story of two singers, one a nautanki singer and the other a baithak [classical] singer. Both performers relive days of their glory and have witty anecdotes to tell of escapes from kings palaces, slapping British officers, getting kidnapped by the local rangeeley zamindars, refuting lovelorn nawabs and getting duped by charming and conniving men in the name of love and marriage. Each anecdote is accompanied by a musical and a dance number. Each anecdote is exploration into time and seeing things with a revived and perhaps revised perspective. For example a, manglacharan written in english during the British times, in respect of Queen Elizabeth. It is hilarious and yet also a piece of history. Afsaneh is evocative, nostalgic, romantic and full of music, humour, pathos, relevance and has the potential to glam up. It has all the makings of being a crowd pleaser and theatrically strong as well. It does have the amazing capacity to make people laugh, think, stun them and to bring them to tears in the end. The theatrical potential is immense as we traverse time and perspective throughout the narrative. As we explore the lives of the two women we touch upon some golden moments of the history of performing arts through time. Traversing in time through memoirs can be tricky. Because one always remembers the past as a combination of how it happened and how it should have happened. The desire to superimpose ones desires on time is inevitable. The lives of the two women are not lessons in history but life as well.

Aarambh Mumbai 

Purva Naresh

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