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Dick Whittington Goes Bollywood - Tara Theatre

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

FOLLOWING the success of Molière’s The Miser (Kanjoos) and last year’s pantomime Bollywood Cinderella, Tara Arts teams stage, film and TV actress and writer Harvey Virdi with their director Jatinder Verma to produce Dick Whittington Goes Bollywood.

Described as a seasonal treat with music, melodrama and multi-coloured magic, it runs at Tara Theatre from December 5, 2012 to January 5, 2013. A Christmas show with a difference, it combines all the fun of panto with the glitz of Bollywood.

Jatinder Verma is co-founder and Artistic Director of Tara Arts, the pioneering cross-cultural theatre company which marked its 30th year in 2007 with a critically-acclaimed production of The Tempest. The company tours nationally and internationally, and co-producers with Tara Arts include the National Theatre. In 2009, Verma returned to the National with a co-production of Hanif Kureishi’s new play, The Black Album.

Author of The Story of Diwali, a book for children, Verma has also published several articles exploring the nature of modern cross-culturalism. His frequent work on radio and TV includes the Sony Award winning Ashes to the Ganges and the 3-part serialisation (with Claudia Mayer) of The Mahabharata (both for BBC Radio 4) and, for Radio 3, Renouncing India and Kashmir, the Flower of India.

Harvey Virdi is a veteran of British-Asian theatre but is perhaps best known for her role as Nina Mandal in Coronation Street. Her theatre credits include When We are Married, Romeo and Juliet, Square Circle and Playboy of the Asian World (Leicester Haymarket), Airport 2000 (Riverside Studios) and Jatinder Verma’s production of Exodus (Tara Arts/BAC).

In 2003, she played Mrs Peachum in a touring production of The Threepenny Opera for the Royal National Theatre and in 2004, was critically acclaimed as Maria in an Indian-themed production of Twelfth Night at the Albery Theatre.

Her screen credits include Bend It Like Beckham, Anita and Me, Thunderbirds, Bride and Prejudice, The Mistress of Spices and Brick Lane (film); Boohbah, Doctors and Whose Baby? (TV).

Written by Harvey Virdi and directed by Jatinder Verma, Dick Whittington Goes Bollywood is designed by Claudia Mayer.

Tickets: Evenings £16.50 (£14 concessions), matinees £12.50. Available from the box office on 0208 333 4457 or online at

Times: Monday to Saturday at 7.30pm, matinees at 3pm on December 8, 15, 20, 22, 27, 28 and 29 and January 3, 4 and 5, and 1.30pm on December 6 and 13.