NAPA production: Curtain rises for ‘Nek Parveen’

NAPA’s year-ending production, directed by Zia Mohyeddin, kick-starts today.

Express December 29, 2011


The long-awaited “Nek Parveen” by the Napa Repertory Theatre (NRT) will start playing at the Karachi Arts Council from today. A glimpse of the play was unveiled at a press conference held at Napa last week where the cast and crew seemed very excited about their latest endeavour.

“Nek Parveen”, a play written by the acclaimed playwright Agha Hashar, is directed by theatre veteran Zia Mohyeddin. Hashar wrote this play in 1910 in Hyderabad, Deccan, where it was first performed. Following that, for the next 10 years, it was staged in different cities of India under various titles: “Silver King”, “Na-Aqibat Andesh”, “Achuta Daman”, “Pak Daman” and “Nek Perveen”. Wherever it was staged, the play received enormous success.

This time around, it will be Mohyeddin and an army of talented graduates from Napa, all set to cast their spell. “Since the inception of NRT, theatre has become a growing trend in Karachi, with some of our graduates doing really well,” Rahat Kazmi, veteran actor and the artistic director of NRT, said at the press conference.

Napa biggies make a comeback

“Nek Parveen” also marks the return of a number of Napa heavyweights to NRT. Names that have brought Napa in the limelight — Akbar Islam, Aiman Tariq, Ali Rizvi, Paras Masroor, Mesum Naqvi, Nazarul Hasan and Sunil Shankar among others — are a part of the play as well.

Kazmi appreciates the efforts put in by the actors and, above all, for dedicating their efforts towards theatre in times when TV is the popular medium. However, on the same note, he rues the dearth of original Urdu plays in Pakistan, appealing for more potential actors and playwrights to come forward. “We don’t want to keep on performing to these old classic plays; we need new material being written,” Kazmi adds.

Meanwhile, Akbar Islam, also the assistant director of the play, considers working with Mohyeddin a lifetime experience. “I have assisted Zia Sb in almost all of his plays and it’s a huge learning experience,” said Islam, who also plays the role of a character called Tehseen in the play.

Having closely worked with the director, Islam believes that “Nek Parveen” will be very different from the other productions that Napa has done. “’Nek Parveen’ is all about exaggeration — it is Urdu melodrama at its best,” says Islam. “Apart from that, the plays has an interesting mix of Urdu prose and poetry so fans of Urdu language shouldn’t miss it by any chance.”

“Nek Parveen” runs from December 30 to January 8 everyday at 8pm apart from today when the show starts at 6pm.

Published in The Express Tribune, December 30th, 2011.


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