(MENAFN -Khaleej Times) city times spoke to anwar maqsood and dawar mehmood of satirical play pawnay 14 august which will be presented in the city tomorrow
Pawnay 14 august is a thought-provoking story of what pakistan was perceived as and what pakistan has become today. revolving around three principal characters, mohammad ali jinnah (quaid-i-azam), allama iqbal and maulana shaukat ali, the play places them in modern day pakistan. filled with questions and curiosity, the story is replete with a variety of characters representing pakistani society, from politics, business and military to the film world. the setting is karachi airport where each passenger is a storyteller.
While talking to city times, the play’s writer anwar maqsood, who has had a glorious 45-year career weaving his storytelling magic on tv, said, “i am excited about bringing my play to dubai. we have completed around 300 packed shows in karachi, islamabad and lahore. this is the first time we are going out of our country. i can vouch that in the history of pakistani theatre, this is the most successful play so far.” the play is a commentary on pakistan’s current state of affairs, sketched in maqsood’s own inimitable style. he said that he has made a career out of writing satire and anti-government stories and wonders how he is still safe and sound in spite of all that.
This play is the first part of the trilogy that will end with saade 14 august, which will premiere on august 14. the third play will feature muhammad ali jinnah, pandit jawahar lal nehru, mahatma gandhi, lord mountbatten and edwina mountbatten, benazir bhutto and maulana azad amongst other prominent figures from india and pakistan, and will have all the characters sitting near the indo-pak border and discussing the relationship between two countries in a satirical fashion.
Maqsood, who is also famously known as ‘the man with a golden pen’ and has been an advocate of sophisticated humour, also has a musical connection - he is the father of bilal maqsood, the lead guitarist of popular rock band strings, who is currently in india. maqsood counts the late mf hussain, mj akbar and javed akhtar as his close indian friends.
This is the first time that maqsood has written a play. he was impressed with young talent dawar mehmood, the producer and director of the play, who came to karachi only to shake hands with his favourite writer but ended up working on a play with him. maqsood said that he has a lot of hope from young talent and believes that they will bring in a lot of creative work with their energy, dedication and hard work.
Dawar mehmood said that this play is like a roller coaster ride; the intense storyline of the play will make one laugh and cry in a fraction of one minute. “theatre was a hobby in pakistan,” he esplains. “but our play has been a game changer. now people are making a living out it. actors are paying their own rent. theatre is becoming so powerful that we have left tv behind. right now we are very critical and cynical towards the current scenario of the pakistani tv and film industry and we are confident that we will rise much above our film scenario as well.”
He added that he has never done shows outside of pakistan, so he is nervous and excited, and believes that the audience especially indians and pakistanis will have a great time watching the play.
After the dubai schedule, the troupe has further shows in the usa and uk.
Pawnay 14 august, has two shows on thursday, march 20 at ductac (mall of the emirates), dubai. tickets are priced at dhs500, dhs275 and dhs100. for more ticket details, call 050 2254010.