On Friday, February 17, 2023, Indian Institute of Management Indore (IIM Indore) hosted an extraordinary two-and-a-half-hour performance of Rian Johnson’s “Knives Out,” featuring the talented students of the institute. Under the guidance of Prof. Himanshu Rai, Director of IIM Indore, who served as the Executive Producer of the play, and the direction of Prof. Shweta Kushal, Faculty, the cast of 17 actors and actresses from various programmes delivered an exceptional performance after three months of intense preparation.
Prof. Rai congratulated the entire cast and crew for their outstanding performance, recognizing the vital role that events such as this play in shaping students’ personal and professional development. “These occasions provide valuable opportunities for students to hone their teamwork, leadership, communication skills, and appreciation for hard work. My students have done an amazing job, and I am incredibly proud of them,” he remarked.
The play is centered on a detective named Benoit Blanc, investigating the demise of Harlan Thrombey, the patriarch of a wealthy, disorganized family. The play explores a wide range of emotions, including greed, anger, wisdom, friendship, justice, hatred, jealousy, and more.
“Detective fiction has always been my favorite genre”, said Prof. Shweta Kushal. This is the reason why I wanted to make an adaptation of Rian Johnson’s tribute to detective fictions. There were challenges in transforming the story from the screen to something meaningful live on stage. Without the exceptional commitment of the cast and the meticulous work of the crew, the standing ovation from a phenomenal audience wouldn’t have been possible, she added. “This is my fourth play in IIM Indore and the institute has always been extremely supportive of my theatre based creative endeavors. I am eternally grateful for this unforgettable experience”, she said.
One of the actors who participated in the play, Vanshika Chaudhary, shared that the play was the result of three months of hard work and dedication from the cast and crew. ‘Our play’s director, Prof. Shweta Kushal, played an instrumental role in ensuring that we actors dove deep into our characters, embodied our emotions, and delivered our best performances’, she said. She said that Prof. Kushal’s unwavering commitment ensured that the production’s various components came together harmoniously on a gorgeously plated stage.
The performance drew an impressive audience, including members of the IIM Indore community, army officers from Mhow, special invitees, and theatre enthusiasts from the city, all of whom packed the auditorium.