Playwright-Actor Ayub Khan Din Takes Over Leading Role of Bunty Berman Presents… Off-Broadway

By Adam Hetrick
22 Apr 2013

Ayub Khan Din
Ayub Khan Din

Olivier Award-winning playwright Ayub Khan Din has stepped into the title role of his new Off-Broadway musical Bunty Berman Presents... following the injury of original leading man Erick Avari last week.

Avari ("The Mummy") sustained an injury from a fall during a rehearsal the week of April 14, and withdrew from the production on doctor's orders. Without an understudy in place, The New Group was forced to cancel the April 19, 20 and 22 performances of the musical that is co-authored by Din and Grammy and Emmy Award winner Paul Bogaev.

Din, the award-winning playwright of East Is East and Rafta Rafta..., has now taken over the central role of Bollywood film producer Bunty Berman. Performances will resume April 24. Opening night remains May 9.

New Group artistic director Scott Elliott directs the production that is scheduled to run through June 1.



Set in a 1950s Bollywood studio and incorporating music inspired by the Golden Age of Hollywood, Bunty Berman Presents... has book and lyrics by Din with music by Din and veteran Broadway conductor-musical director Bogaev (Aida, Les Miserables, Bombay Dreams, "Chicago"). Josh Prince choreographs with musical direction by Boko Suzuki.

The cast also features Raja Burrows, Nick Choksi, Katie Chung, Sevan Greene, Andrew Guilarte, Shoba Narayanan, Lyn Philistine, Debargo Sanyal, Pallavi Sastry, Gayton Scott, Lipica Shah, Alok Tewari and Sorab Wadia.

According to the New Group, "Movie producer Bunty Berman has long been the toast of Bombay, but now Raj, his biggest star and best friend, is beginning to lose his lustre. When their new movie bombs, Bunty must navigate through divas, mobsters and ambitious tea-boys to keep his studio alive."

The production has set design by Derek McLane, costume design by William Ivey Long, lighting design by David Lander, sound design by ACME Sound Partners, projection design by Wendall K. Harrington, and orchestrations and arrangements by Bogaev and Suzuki. Bogaev also serves as musical supervisor.

The Acorn Theatre is located at 410 West 42nd Street. For tickets, priced $60, visit telecharge.com or phone (212) 239-6200.