Malayalam actor Roshan Mathew’s grandmother, Rosamma, died last week. She was 87 years old. Rosamma was buried in her hometown of Changanassery in Kottayam. After all, she was a spirited woman who greatly influenced Roshan’s worldview. And she dedicated her life to protecting her husband AE Augustine’s legacy: the family home called Alummootil. Or at least what was left of it after the house was partially razed to the ground by the government to make way for a highway.
Roshan’s grandfather Augustine taught English at St Berchmans College. He was also a famous public speaker. And his speaking skills clearly rubbed off on Roshan. During an open mic performance at the commune’s Spoken Fest about a year ago, Roshan shared an unfortunate story of Alummootil, which means under the banyan tree in Malayalam.
Roshan Mathew said he spent his school holidays in Alummotil, which his grandfather built piece by piece for over 20 years. That’s how long it would take a normal mortal to build his dream home with his normal salary. But according to Roshan’s report, Alummootil turned out to be a beautiful house with a garden that, ironically, was home to a variety of trees, except for a banyan tree.
And in just over eight minutes, Roshan is giving us a master class in public speaking and storytelling while sharing some fond memories of his childhood. The history of Alummootil is very understandable, because it is full of civic aspirations and longings. History also reminds us of the high price common socialmediagossips have to pay in the name of development. It’s a daunting story. But at the same time, Roshan gives the story an uplifting ending that will make you fall in love with Alummotil.
Roshan Mathew’s speech reminds us why he is one of India’s most promising young actors. He’s a talent to look out for. On the labor front, Roshan will next be seen in Kuruthi, starring Prithviraj Sukumaran. He also has Cobra, Kothu, Darlings and Chathuram in the pipeline.