'Scary Bad'
'Scary Bad' offers an original take on an old premise. Image Credit: Supplied

This weekend we face a dilemma: shall we be scared or shall we laugh? ‘Scary Bad’, a play written and directed by comedian Arzoo Malhotra, may hope we do both.

The horror-comedy, which runs at The Junction from August 5-7, follows a group of teens staying over at a remote lake house over a weekend when they come across someone – or something – sinister.

“Firstly, bringing horror and suspense to the stage was such an intriguing idea for me. Finding a way to create tension and fear on stage is complex. To do this, our team has been experimenting with sound, light, and live music to enhance the ambience, which has been such a creatively fulfilling process. Secondly, I am a comedian at heart, and I love joking about things! There are so many clichés in horror, and it's been so fun poking fun at the tropes and trying to subvert them. Finally, I'm actually a huge scaredy cat, and I was hoping making a horror myself would make me much less scared myself,” explains Malhotra about her choice of genre.

One of the show’s leads, Gauri Chadha Rupani insists: “Scary Bad is a refreshing, original story that will take audiences on a rollercoaster of the unexpected while of course leaving you in fits of laughter!”

When discussing productions these days, an obvious question is, how did COVID-19 affect it? Malhotra recalls the ways. “Oh it has had a huge impact on our play. Members of the cast and crew have had to go into quarantine a couple of times during the rehearsal process, which meant we had a lot of Zoom rehearsals. At the end of the day, theater is a live medium, and it's hard to capture that magic over Zoom,” she says.

But it still managed to excite the cast; Rupani says: “I play a character called Maya. She is an intelligent yet empathetic teenager who is really the 'big sister' amongst her friends…It has been an incredible ride that has allowed me to push my creative boundaries and performance experience.”

And now the time draws nearer for the friends to head into the woods, for the curtains to rise and the fear to take control…if you can keep yourself from laughing that is.

Don’t Miss it!

Tickets to see ‘Scary Bad’ which runs at The Junction from August 5-7 start at Dh100.