Category Archives: Simon Nagra

Rafta, Rafta…, Lyttleton – Review

A lustful relationship leads to a beautiful Bollywood marriage leads to… absolutely nothing in the bedroom.

A young married couple lives with his parents, their room placed firmly in between his folks and his brothers on the second floor – so it may not be all that odd when, six weeks later, there’s been no action whatsoever in the bedroom. However, it appears that Atul’s (Ronny Jhutti) problems are deeper rooted than that, cause what viril lad would let a little thing like family stand in the way of consummating his marriage to his beautiful wife Vina (Rokhsaneh Ghawam-Shahidi)?

Bollywood actor Harish Patel makes his West End debut in “Rafta, Rafta…” and is perhaps the most delightful character in this production as Atul’s father Eeshwar. Unable to connect with his oldest son, missing and obsessing over his friend that all of a sudden lost touch with him (even after he came on honeymoon with him and his wife Meera to Blackpool), enjoying being the centre of attention (even at his son’s wedding reception) and finding himself attempting a long overdue birds and bees talk with Atul after yet another failed shag in the middle of the night.

Being a virgin as far as seeing Bollywood on a stage, I can vouch for the fact that you don’t need to be Indian or know anything about Bollywood to enjoy this production. I’ve seen all of one Bollywood movies (“Monsoon Wedding” for those interested) and enjoyed this play more. The sense of humour, the slight piss-take of Indian family life, the ups and downs (ahem) of being newly-weds living in a house full of distractions, families and in-laws getting involved in one husband’s unability to take his wife’s virginity.

Rafta, Rafta… is on at the Lyttleton – National Theatre, from 18th of April until 23rd of June.