Nida Kirmani, a professor of Sociology at the Lahore University of Management Sciences, was carving jack-o’-lanterns all last week in preparation for a fellow academic’s Halloween party.
“He’s very serious about it,” remarked Kirmani about Adnan Khan, the mathematics professor hosting the party. Kirmani had a hard time deciding what she was going to dress up as, finally deciding on the standard witch costume. “I’ll wear a mask and the crooked long nose that I bought from Variety Books in Liberty,” she said. “There wasn’t much of a variety,” she said.
“I always take Halloween very seriously,” said Khan, who has been organising a party for the last seven years. Last year, he dressed up and roamed around the campus, in the ‘spirit’ of the holiday. He looks at Halloween as an opportunity to “relax, dress up funny… just unwind and do something fun.” Khan and his friends have regularly decorated his faculty apartment with skeletons and jack-o’-lanterns.
Apart from the intimate affair that the professor held for his circle of friends, Lums also hosted a thriller night for its students on Saturday.
Schools like Lahore American School and The New School have been celebrating the spooky holiday. “As a school that follows international calendar, we have to celebrate all international holidays to educate our children about world cultures,” says Ayesha Kasuri, the deputy head at TNS. The school held a Halloween celebration on Friday night.
Lahore Grammar School (LGS) had no overt Halloween plans. Instead, the school hosted a concert by the band Josh. “We have functions like bonfires and reunions. But we don’t do Halloween or Valentines,” says Mishaal Malik, an eighth grader at LGS Kabana.
Private parties, however, were all ready to steal the show. Verve events, for instance, flew in DJ Pope from London and promised a performance by an upcoming vocal talent. Hussna Khan, a PR agent, also relied on international acts like DJ Chris Metcalfe and DJ Julia from London and Germany respectively, for her fiery Halloween night.
To facilitate those who will be attending parties and events such as these, certain salons offered packages for costume make up. Sunuba Spa and Salon, whose target audience was students, had packages starting from Rs1,400.
Tony and Guy had services available from Rs1,500 onwards. Shammal Qureishi, creative director at Tony and Guy, said, “We had so many clients requesting Halloween makeup last year that we decided to offer standard packages this time around.”
Published in The Express Tribune, October 30th, 2011.