Tara’s Trio: In this colourful musical, technology befriends boredom and imagination

Directed by Kalyani Hiwale and Akhshay Gandhi, children’s play Tara’s Trio is ready to take the stage at Ranga Shankara on April 27

4 min readApr 25, 2024
A scene from the play

By Reema Gowalla

It’s often said that technology is ruining childhood. But what if the ‘digital space’ is befriended by ‘boredom’ and ‘imagination’? Wouldn’t that be a curious adventure for the kid to create an interesting world of their own? Directed by Kalyani Hiwale and Akhshay Gandhi, Tara’s Trio explores the possibilities of finding a balance between the three when used in moderation. This new Hindi-English new musical is set to be performed at Ranga Shankara on April 27.

Presented by Collective Madness, in association with Conservatory for Arts & Artists, Tara’s Trio traces the journey of a nine-year-old girl who lives with her parents. Tara, however, is unaware that there are three secret friends who share the space with her — they are Andro (technology), Wadeva (boredom) and Imagenie (imagination). The plot begins when one day, Tara and her family embark on a road trip to visit her nani. Unfortunately, their car breaks down in the middle of a forest and they encounter a trick master, called Baba Black Sheep Singh. What Tara and her three companions do to tackle this con artist forms the crux of the story.

Kalyani Hiwale and Akhshay Gandhi

A fun-filled, action-packed play, Tara’s Trio is a celebration of friendship, peppered with laughter, suspense and ‘Pixar-like’ animation. Although the narrative is primarily designed for children, the play is said to be perfect even for adults who are young at heart! The cast includes Shristi Sharma/Prarthana Kudtarkar (Tara), Jeh Alexandar/Sukrit Mahajan (Andro), Kiyomi Mehta/Meghna Roy Chaudhary (Wadeva), Twvinkle Kapoor/Shreya Sharma (Imagenie), Deepa Panchal (Tara’s mother), Ameet Bhuvan/Danesh Gopalkrishnan (Tara’s father) and Kaustav Sinha (Baba Black Sheep Singh). There are also Dilnaz Irani and Maneesh Verma as voiceover artists.

Giving an insight into the 80-minute performance, Akhshay told TheatreRoom, “Tara’s Trio is a musical that both the young and old have enjoyed. According to many of my friends, it’s like watching an animation, a Pixar movie, on stage. There’s a lot of dancing, jumping around, sing-song and drama. That’s also what we too intend to highlight through the play. Although there is a serious matter at hand, instead of making it look more grim, the idea is to make it fun. For instance, why not make a joke about the masala stains on your phone, as you are also cooking while speaking over the phone. It’s a reality that in today’s world we cannot do without technology. So, instead of rejecting it, we should think of how wisely we can incorporate it in our lives and rather humanise it. In Tara’s Trio, the character of technology says, ‘Okay, my battery is going to drain out. I want to save myself. So, let me turn on the power-saving mode’. We want to humanise that part, because we believe that in a way technology is an extension of us.”

The central part of Tara’s Trio is set in a forest

Speaking more about the characters, he said, “Meanwhile, isn’t boredom the wisest and the most ancient state of mind? Isn’t it possibly the beginning of human evolution? We got bored and started inventing things. So, to play boredom on stage is both challenging and fun at the same time. It’s the most chilled out character, because boredom is the wisest. It allows you to relax, because that is also important. Imagination, on the other hand, is a young character. We all want imagination, but it fades out over time. It’s colourful, fairy-like and more fluid in nature. What is interesting about creative power is that it’s not limited to the child, even the parents and the conman have imagination.”

The story of Tara’s Trio is penned by Kalyani and Maneesh, and it’s inspired by their daughter Aadya Verma. The script and lyrics are written by Asif Ali Beg, who has also composed the music for the play. Kaizad Gherda is the music producer. Vishal is the assistant director and he is also in charge of lights. The set and props are handled by Kapil Dev and Niranajn Jadhao, with Sonal Kharade taking care of the costumes. Maneesh is also the creative producer of the show, along with Anita Gandhi as the executive producer.

Catch shows of Tara’s Trio at Ranga Shankara on April 27 (3.30pm and 7.30pm). You can book your tickets here.

The musical evokes a sense of ‘Pixar-like’ animation on stage