Play preview: ENAD’s adaptation of Agatha Christie’s ‘Red Herring’ is a thriller set in Bengaluru

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Red Herring

Red Herring
| Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

Bengali drama group ENAD is getting ready with their latest production, Red Herring, a gripping crime mystery, which is a tribute to novelist Agatha Christie, who came up with the plot device called ‘Red Herring’. . 

The play attempts to take theatregoers on a journey through the intricacies of human behaviour, complex character psychologies, and a suspenseful crime in the heart of Bengaluru.

The play, according to its makers, explores the rich tapestry of emotions, reactions, and dilemmas faced by its characters, serving as a mirror to our society, replete with uncertainties, distrust, apprehensions, and fear. However, it also shines a light on hope, love, and, above all, the pursuit of truth. Audiences can expect to think critically about their responses in various circumstances.

“At ENAD, we believe that theatre has the power to challenge our perceptions and make us think deeper about the world around us,” says Amitava Baksy, the director of the play. “With Red Herring, we aim to do just that by exploring the psychologies of our characters.”

Producing Red Herring was also a personal decision for Amitava. “The story is close to my heart, influenced by my lifelong affinity for Agatha Christie’s novels and the detective genre. From my childhood, I have been captivated by the suspense, intrigue, and intricacies of the stories of detection.”

“At ENAD, we have always been passionate about exploring diverse genres of theatre, including historical plays, social dramas, classics, and more. However, we had never ventured into the thriller genre before. It was hard to ignore the fact that detective stories, both in regional and national cinema, as well as on OTT platforms, have consistently garnered significant attention. Icons like Byomkesh and Feluda have become household names.”

Once the genre was fixed, Amitava turned to Agatha’s stories for inspiration. “While her novels have inspired numerous movies, there are relatively few stage adaptations. We saw an opportunity to bring the magic of her storytelling to the theatre audience, providing them with a unique and immersive experience.”

Amitava wanted to adapt only the core plot elements from her stories. The play is rooted in Bengaluru. “I also wanted to bring out the daily lives of our city’s residents, including their likes, dislikes, fears and insecurities,” he adds.

Red Herring, hence, stood out as a perfect amalgamation of Amitava’s fondness for Agatha Christie, the unexplored thriller genre for ENAD, and a story that could be both gripping and relatable to the Bengaluru audience.

ENAD, short for Ekti NAtaker Dol, meaning “A Theatre Group” in English, was originally founded in May 2000 in the San Francisco Bay Area, USA. They have made 25 productions with over 100 shows, gracing stages in multiple cities across India.

The 90-minute play will speak Bengali, Hindi, English, and Kannada.

The curtains will rise at KH Kalasoudha in Hanumanthnagar on October 1 offering two showtimes at 3:30 pm and 6:30 pm. Tickets on bookmyshow.com.

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