Theatre Royal, Stratford East, London E15
Opened 16 April, 1991

This sprawling tale of the goings-on in and around a Bombay apartment block hits the stage like a high-grade soap: sumptuous sets (including a working lift), rapidly intercut storylines and a passive sit-back-and-let-it-wash-over-you mode of viewing. The real insights into the lives and mores of exiled Hindu Sindhis sneak in under cover of the plot: the reverence given to education as an emblem of caste status, the developing debate about arranged marriages versus love matches, and the perennial quest of the young to establish an identity of their own are all present as undercurrents without tipping the family sagas over into portentousness. Fun, illuminating and excitingly chunky.

Written for City Limits magazine.

Copyright © Ian Shuttleworth; all rights reserved.

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