It is always the dream of an artiste, especially a theatre person, to take his work across the seas, and showcase it to audiences that encompass a geographical and cultural identity that is alien to ours. I had the great opportunity to perform with my friend and partner, Mathivanan Rajendran at the Dubai Community Theatre Arts and Centre, on March 3, 2013. We were performing our play, The Lost Audition, which was also my first ever play as a playwright, at the Short + Sweet Theatre festival.
Little did we realise that our play could contain elements that could be considered offensive to anyone. But some things cannot be taken too lightly, and just three hours before the show we were asked if the popular figure mentioned in the play could be altered. Why? Because mentioning Osama Bin Laden in Dubai would not be welcomed by the Arabs! It's funny because his name is uttered only once in the entire play, and we also thrashed the Americans in our play, which to our surprise was lapped by the European audiences. Having come a long way we weren't prepared for an empty hall. But sometimes artistic liberties take precedence to political correctness, and we went ahead and stuck to the script, except eliminating a few F words - we were bold not stupid. And guess what, Mathivanan won the Best Actor of the festival, and I was awarded the prize because they got the names wrong while filling the winners list. They say it takes a lot of guts to be on stage, I think it takes a lot of guts to take a stand through it too.