Ajoka enthrals Islamabad audience

Pakistan (Qasim Ali)

Islamabad Ajoka theatre festival in Islamabad has been a smashing success, with packed houses and prolonged applause every day. The festival at Pakistan National Council of Arts started on 25 June with “Teesri Dastak”, a play about residents of a dilapidated building who find a novel way of resisting eviction notice by a greedy landlord. On the second day, Ajoka’s iconic play “Bulha” was presented. The play tells the dramatic story of Sufi poet Bulleh Shah’s spiritual journey and his defiance of the intolerant clergy. On the third day,Shahid Nadeem’s international masterpiece “Dara” was presented. The play revolves around the ideological conflict between Mughal princes Dara Shikoh and Aurangzeb. The pkay included poetry by Dara, Sarmad and Amir Khusrau. “Dara” has been adapted and produced by National Theatre in 2015 to great critical and public acclaim. Ajoka will also give a special performance of “Bulha” at the Islamabad Club on 28 June. The festival, hosted by the PNCA, was held to commemorate Ajoka’s 40th anniversary. Speaking on the first day of the festival, Director General PNCA Ayub Jamali, congratulated Ajoka on its 40th anniversary and appreciated its valuable contribution to Pakistani theatre. Ajoka Executive Director Shahid Nadeem thanked PNCA support for the festival and socially meaningful theatre.