Monday, January 10, 2011

A Quest for Home

Harlesden High Street is an English play written by Abhishek Majumdar, set in London with three Pakistani immigrants as the main characters. He has won the Metroplus Playwright award for this play in 2008. The play deals with search for identity by the working middle class who are away from their roots. All three characters are constantly on a search for Home, the metaphor for an identity in a land where they had taken shelter from a long time, but still not become their own. 

Rehaan, a second generation immigrant is running a Pak cash and carry shop with his friend Kareem who wants to take his mother for an eye surgery, in Harlesden High Street, known for its immigrant population. The store does not earn them enough for that and this causes clashes between each other. The preoccupation with selling causes a void in their personal lives too.  Rehaan lives with his father's ghost who has very high ambitions for his son, which he is not able to fulfill. Both Kareem and Rehaan are on search for a way to sell their goods, when they are not comparing the virtues of Karachi,  with the indifference and prejudices of natives. Ammi, Kareem's mother lives in past, recollecting about her husband and feeling bad about her deteriorating eye sight.

After a thorough soul searching caused by increasing frustration, the three protagonists finds the truth that all people are same and it is up to them to built up their home by working together. A rain causes them to make the shop a shelter and results in a good business. The rain of love and harmony ultimately makes them rooted in Harlesden High Street.  


  1. Seems to be a good interesting storyline. Where did you watch this play?

  2. Harish, while in Blore I was a member of a creative writing class by Vijay Nair. I met Abhishek several times and we discussed this play for two classes...It is an amazing emotional story ..And Abhishek is a humble unassuming young boy seen loitering around in Ranga Shakara...I guess Abhishek won some award for this play...
    I have not watched the play though...

  3. @sandhya: In Rangasankara, blore

    @Alka: thats incredible. If u are in contact with him give him my congrats and say I will try to catch up with other works too..

  4. I lost his number after i moved to Gurgaon...He lives in J P Nagar, close to Ranga Shankara

  5. will try to get in touch with him:-)

  6. Hi Harish, Indian Ensemble has a blog here
    And site here
    You can get in touch with us/Abhishek from either of the places.
    Best Regards,
    Indian Ensemble Team