Stories about theatre

The Deathly Hallows: Harry Potter comes of age

The Harry Potter series has come a long way since the first book. The film adaptations have managed to stay true to J K Rowling’s books and the latest film, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – the  seventh in the series – tells the darker side of the that story audiences world over have come to love. The film takes us into the mind of Lord Voldemort, the darkest wizard of all time whom Harry must defeat by the end of his quest. Unlike previous films, there is no attempt to tone down the dark cruelty of the Death ...

Read Full Post

Long live Lollywood!

Lollywood originates from my hometown of Lahore. My childhood consists of vivid memories of Royal Park – unique as a glittering place – mesmerising me each time and offering escape from reality. However, the place has changed over the years and so has Lollywood. Who is to blame for the decay of Lollywood? The answer, simply, is filmmakers. Many have said that Lollywood needs a lethal injection to die once and for all as it couldn’t revive despite bans on foreign films, tax waivers, special grants and receiving the status of an industry. However, there’s always a flip side to the story. ...

Read Full Post

Why Ali Saleem is wrong

Ali Saleem’s interview with The Express Tribune serves to highlight a critical flaw in Pakistan’s entertainment industry. When asked if he intends to return to India, Saleem remarks that: “Pakistan is plagued with problems and entertainment is not a priority there.” This declaration stands the risk of being misinterpreted, as it explicitly denies that a progressive attitude has been upheld to improve the deteriorating condition of the entertainment industry in Pakistan. But prior to pouring scorn on the validity of this statement, it is essential to understand how accurate a representation it is of Pakistan’s entertainment industry. Pakistan’s entertainment sector is an extant ...

Read Full Post

The Birdcage, distorted in Pakistan

Having first learned of the theatrical debut of ‘BirdCage’ in Lahore, I could not help but feel jubilation and mirth. A gay-themed play? I almost fainted with anticipation. This was something I was definitely going to watch. First things first. The producer Dawar Lashari, co-producers Waleed Zafar and Shaheryar Khan and director Ijlal Khan must not only be thanked for bringing us this light-hearted comedy amidst these insane times to our country, where one cannot switch to news channels without expecting another macabre breaking news, but also they should be lauded for their courage to even think of staging a gay-themed play. However, ...

Read Full Post

Let there be laughter

One of the many parallels to the chaos theory demonstrate how, even when everything goes terribly wrong, the result can be inherently ‘right’…for reasons that defy explanation. Such was the packed audience’s reaction to Production Illusion’s farce titled ‘Noises Off’ that opened at Al-hamra on August 5, 2010. The play was written by English playwright Michael Frayn in 1982, after he contemplated the nature of ‘backstage’ drama. According to the playwright, “It was funnier from behind than in front and I thought that one day I must write a farce from behind.” Noises Off, thereby is a play within a play ...

Read Full Post

Five years of Napa

The so-called city of lights did have plays on and off before, but the establishment of Napa made the theatre movement what it is today – a series of full acts with no intervals. The National Academy of Performing Arts (Napa) was inaugurated in February, five years ago by then President General Pervez Musharraf. Run by acting veteran Zia Mohyuddin, the academy churned out its first batch of more than 40 students in theatre arts and around 20 students from its music department in 2005. However, almost 50 per cent of the students enrolled in both departments fail to cope with the four to five hours long ...

Read Full Post

They like to move it, move it – yet more insolence at Kuch Khaas

The Insolent Nights returned to Kuch Khaas, bigger and better this time with the Madagascar-inspired theme on June 12. ‘Movement’ was the order of the day and it came full circle with performances punctuated by classical dance, musical recitals, tongue-in-cheek pieces and more insolence brought to the table. Shayan Afzal Khan, patron of Kuch Khaas, encouraged the audience to “get rid of (their) inhibitions and contribute to the cause”. She stressed that the art scene would go on with support from the people who appreciate it and who would like to see more of it. The donations go not to ...

Read Full Post