Horror play ‘The Room of Long-Handed Bushasp,’ directed by visual artist, essayist, playwright and theater director Ali Ettehad, 34, opens on June 22, at Tehran’s Shahrzad Theater.
“It is a game based on our nightmares” says an introduction to the play on the website of Tiwall (tiwall.com).
“It is different from what is usually expected of a play,” he said.
The show will run through July 21, starting each night at 7:30. Theater actor Mehdi Pakdel, 36, is in the cast. Other thespians are Ra’na Azadivar, Mahgol Safdari and Andisheh Fouladvand.
Each night, there will be a different performance of the play; audiences will be asked to make a random pick of three stories to be staged from a total of five.
Conventional, archaic language is usually used by Ettehad in his works; but this time he opts for “unsophisticated dialogues.”
“In parts where the play deals with nightmares, my emphasis is on psychological interpretation and analysis,” ILNA quoted him as saying at a press briefing.
“I’m interested in horror genre, not that I want to scare the audiences; it’s because the atmosphere of such a genre is close to my imagination,” he said assuring that the show is not really frightening.
Bushasp who is mentioned several times in the Avesta, the primary collection of Zoroastrian texts, is the demon of slumber and is also known to represent indolence. But only his association with slumber is rendered in the play.
Bushasp has been called the long-handed from Zoroastrian mythology which described him as an evil genius with a gaunt body, long arms, and yellow skin. Rooster is his enemy as the male bird wakes people up.
Pakdel who attended the press briefing said, “What I find unusual about Ettehad is that he constantly reworks the text. My world is quite different from what is pictured here (in the play).”