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“The Merchants of Bollywood” Is an Indian Music and Dance Spectacular

"The Merchants of Bollywood" plays Raleigh on Oct. 21st

Broadway Series South brings "The Merchants of Bollywood" to Raleigh on Oct. 21st

Broadway Series South will present the 2006 Australian musical, The Merchants of Bollywood, written and directed by Toby Gough, at 8 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 21st, in Raleigh Memorial Auditorium in the Progress Energy Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Raleigh, NC. Direct from Film City in Mumbai (Bombay), this Indian music and dance spectacular tells the story of the Bollywood film industry and especially the dynasty of choreographers from the Merchant family, starting with Hiralalji Merchant and ending with his granddaughter Vaibhavi Merchant, who has earned international renown.

According to Broadway Series South:

“After its triumph in Asia and Europe, including 16 sold-out performances in London, the international hit The Merchants of Bollywood is making its way to North America ….

“An international musical dance spectacular, The Merchants of Bollywood charts the history of the world’s largest and most prolific film industry and a dynasty of stars that have lit the industry’s path over generations. The dancers’ energy, with bangles, beads, and swirling colorful costumes, is a frenetic flow of onstage activity meant to excite the senses with lavish, bold musical production numbers that feature all the smash hit songs from the biggest Bollywood blockbusters throughout its cinematic history.

The Merchants of Bollywood will reveal to North American audiences how cinema resides in the heart and soul of Indian society in an evening of music and dance at the heart of which lies a story of a young girl, her grandfather, and their love of dance.

“Written and directed by Toby Gough, The Merchants of Bollywood is loosely based on the real-life story of the Merchant family dynasty, whose members have been prominent choreographers and filmmakers since the beginning of the Hindi film industry in the 1920s. The production features choreography by the internationally renowned Vaibhavi Merchant, who is regarded as Bollywood’s top choreographer today, and is set to music by Salim-Sulaiman.

The Merchants of Bollywood has been seen by more than 2 million people worldwide. The original production was developed in Mumbai, India, with 50 performers, 500 lavish costumes and 3,000 pieces of glittering jewelry….”

During the show’s sold-out London engagement, The Times wrote: “Their energy is electrifying…. [I]t’s high-octane pleasure!” The London Metro noted that “The Merchants of Bollywood has dazzle, shimmer and sparkle…. [I]t’s slick and sexy.”

Broadway Series South presents THE MERCHANTS OF BOLLYWOOD at 8 p.m. Oct. 21 in Raleigh Memorial Auditorium in the Progress Energy Center for the Performing Arts, 2 E. South St., Raleigh, North Carolina 27601.

TICKETS: $20-$55.


Progress Energy Center Box Office: 919/831-6060 (information only).

Ticketmaster: 800/745-3000, 919/834-4000, or







The Merchants of Bollywood: (official website).


Robert W. McDowell is editor and publisher of Triangle Theater Review, a FREE weekly e-mail theatrical newsletter that provides more comprehensive, in-depth coverage of Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill theater than all of the other news media combined. This review is reprinted with permission from Triangle Theater Review.

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