National drama festival: Ties that bind and the proverbial love triangle

Published: December 19, 2011

Vires people from diference fact casting their vot on the occation of annal election of art coual. Members of the cast bring forh some action along with food for thought with every play at PNCA. PHOTO: MUHAMMAD JAVAID

Members of the cast bring forh some action along with food for thought with every play at PNCA. PHOTO: MUHAMMAD JAVAID
Vires people from diference fact casting their vot on the occation of annal election of art coual. Members of the cast bring forh some action along with food for thought with every play at PNCA. PHOTO: MUHAMMAD JAVAID

ISLAMABAD: A stage play, “Bandhan” brought a slight twist to the ongoing commentary on hard-hitting issues at the PNCA drama festival.

Written by ZA Zulfi and directed by Tahir Siddique, the plot revolves around a rich father, trying in vain to marry off his daughter and live up to his reputation.

The daughter in turn, along with her confidante/maid, manages the household and simultaneously tries to convince her lover to send a proposal. Her forgetful father, however, has other plans as in comes his childhood best friend and they both inform her that she has been engaged since childhood to the best friend’s son.

The daughter is torn between her love and her duty as a daughter (sounds familiar?). The twist in the story comes from the father suffering constantly from short term memory losses.

The play was performed at 7pm at the Pakistan National Council of the Arts (PNCA) and was one of the two plays performed on Saturday. The other play was “Rasta”.

In a bid to woo the daughter, the best friend’s son arrives with his secretary in tow, adding a lot of chaos (and noise) to the scenario. What follows is a circus chase between the fiancé running after the girl and girl after her lover. The fiancé’s eccentric behaviour and childish antics of course don’t help in any way of convincing the girl of his eligibility.

In the end it’s the undermined, forgetful father, who saves the day by convincing the daughter that her elusive lover was really after her money, and that the fiancé behaved like a total jerk just so that the girl wouldn’t be obliged into saying yes to a marriage she didn’t want.

Moral of the story: “contrary to what the younger generation think, the parents actually have best intentions for them.”

With the growing generation gap between parents and children, such a play was perhaps a breath of fresh air from the previous heart-wrenching ones. It may not seem a life-threatening issue to many, yet the barrier between adults and youngsters exists and the misconceptions need to be cleared. A little dash of comedy was perhaps the best way to put the idea through, instead of pulling off an overly dramatic affair.

Questioning status quo

An interesting manifestation of culture values, “Raasta” is a play that opened up one avenue too many to the audience at PNCA on Saturday.

Written by Pervaiz Jone and directed by Saeed Anwar, the play was a satire of sorts on the religious and sectarian hatred. The message that resonated through this stage play was the importance of humanity. The plot had nuances disharmony on the basis of religion and biradari (clan).

The actors demonstrated that the problem between human beings is not of religion but social status. The actors highlighted the need to be selfless, humble and respect all mankind.

 Published in The Express Tribune, December 19th, 2011.

More in Pakistan