Staged under the joint auspices of Pakistan National Council of the Arts (PNCA) and Ministry of Culture at the National Art Gallery Auditorium on Wednesday, ‘Aadhi Baat,’ a classic play by veteran writer Bano Qudsia, drew an inspired and spirited response from the audience.
Entrenched in our socio-cultural milieu, the play rotates around the life of a retired headmaster in its focus and unfolds the enigma of life lived, facing harsh day-to-day realities. Directed by Agha Nasir and produced by Tauqeer Nasir, the prominent names among cast included Qavi Khan, Musarrat Malik, Sabir Khan, Nargis Rashid, Anjum Malik, Lubna Shehzadi and Sakina Naz.
Directed on classical lines, the play portrays the plight of men in their struggle through fate and destiny and human attitudes in a sensitive manner. A classic family stage play ‘Aadhi Baat’ has successfully captured the attention of viewers besides contributing towards revival of our traditional theatres due to its beautiful reflection of human behaviours. It’s heartening to see a vibrant and original local play staged by the PNCA when the audience often gets tired of being bombarded with borrowed themes. Yet quite a few people dared to differ from the regular humbug stories and came up with stuff that touched the heart.
Bano Qudsia’s masterpiece was an excellent selection by the PNCA for the three-day staging, celebrating the glorious anecdotes of our very own literary treasures. Renowned stage, TV, and film actor Qavi Khan gave an excellent performance to the ‘larger than life’ character of a headmaster that he was portraying on stage. Other members of the cast also gave excellent performances to make the play a memorable viewing experience for the audience, witnessing the enactment of real life moments and situations on stage.
Bano Qudsia, recipient of Sitara-e-Imtiaz, is known and loved as a writer, intellectual, playwright and spiritualist who is also regarded among the best Urdu novelists and short story writers of modern times. She is best known for her novel ‘Raja Gidh’. She wrote a number of masterpieces for television and stage in both Urdu and Punjabi languages. Bano Qudsia is recognised as a trendsetter in the realm of television plays. Some of them gained immense popularity across the border because of their vitality, warmth and courage. Strife is one word, she would like to banish from the dictionary. She attributes the hostilities raging across the world to the intolerance and selfishness of the human race.