Last month, the theatre-going audience in Dubai were put in the judge’s chair to pass their verdict on the finest 10-minute productions staged by resident drama groups in the UAE. Now in it’s fourth year, the Short+Sweet Dubai — an extension of the international Short+Sweet Festivals that originated in Australia — will conclude on March 11 with a showcase of 11 of those selected fast-theatre productions at Madinat Theatre The best plays, actors and directors will also be awarded at the Red Carpet Gala that night.
Guided by Voices
Writer: Mark Konik
Director: Gautam Goenka; Backstage Productions
A chance meeting of two strangers at an airport turns into a comical scenario when the inner voice of the attractive marketer trying to woo a cute chemist takes over and makes him act oddly.
Writer/Director: Baindu Kalokoh
Abu Dhabi resident Baindu Kalokoh debuted this one-woman play in the inaugural Short+Sweet Festival Abu Dhabi in January where it received positive feedback from the audience. The monologue about her humorous encounters in a New York subway struck a chord with drama enthusiasts in Dubai as well, putting her right through to the finals.
The Tragic Queen
Writer/Director: Sanjeev Dixit; Third Half Theatre
This 10-minute musical by Short+Sweet 2015 winner Dixit has an abundance of over-the-top drama about princesses and ill-fated lovers with an 18-member singing and dancing ensemble.
Greek Civil (Out of) Service
Writer/Director: Constance Kratsa; Thespis Greek Theatre
This wild card entry in the festival is about a Greek citizen who wants to inherit property from her recently deceased mother and faces several hurdles on the way.
Writer: Jayant Pawar
Director: Nilesh Deshpande; Natakwale
The play is set-up as an internal battle within people in the form of a human instinct and an animal instinct towards situations of struggle, wars and peace.
Writer: Clifford Keen
Director: Sabhia Majgaonkar; Orb Theatricals
Designers in God’s council need to collaborate to create a perfectly designed man, but they struggle to put all the pieces together.
Three’s a Crowd
Writers: Yasmina Hatem, Gloria Abou Diwan, Ghadi Yaghi
Director: Ghadi Yaghi
Three Lebanese-nationals from different walks of life find themselves sitting next to each other on a plane from Beirut to Dubai, resulting in light moments that provide insights into the life of an expat.
A Trip Down the Lethe
Writer: Sean O Suilleabhain
Director: Sean O Suilleabhain
Mr Spooner wants to book a surprise holiday for his wife on their 40th wedding anniversary. But his good intentions don’t turn out as planned.
New Year’s Eve
Writer: David MacGregor
Director: Dharam Veer Sood; Third Half Theatre
This play by US-based playwright David McGregor is a self-reflective poignant piece on ageing, death and the point of existence. It is being performed by the Third Half Theatre at the festival.
Hair Ye, Hair Ye …
Writer/Director: Baindu Kalokoh
Kalokoh’s second play in the festival, which gained the popular vote, is one woman’s comedic reflection on her afro-textured hair.
Ya Welcome Ya Welcome
Writer/Director: Rosine Saad
Stan-up comic Saad’s social satire brought the house down when it was first performed during the festival. Subtly touching on the theme of “vaasta” (influence), this 10-minute comedy has Emirati and expat actors enacting a day at a licensing department in Dubai.
• The Short+Sweet Gala Night takes place at Madinat Theatre on March 11 from 7pm. Tickets are from Dh100 on www.madinattheatre.com.