A review on Pakistani Drama theatre play, Perahan (2019). This play was performed at NAPA International Theatre Festival 2019.

 

 

+ Crew

  • Costume Designing, Production Designing, Written & Directed by Bazelah Mustafa
  • Produced by Bee M Production

 

 
+ Note

Perahan is a sequel to the director’s previous play, Soch which was an acclaimed physical theatre production and was performed during the NAPA’s International Theatre Festival 2018.

Although, I wouldn’t call this play a direct sequel as the treatment of both plays were very different.

Bazelah Mustafa has worked in multiple theatre productions in Urdu, English and French across Pakistan and UK. She has also choreographed, directed movements and performed in several dance theatre productions.

 

 
+ Full Cast

  1. Samhan Ghazi as Mr. Saboor
  2. Shabana Hasan as Nanny
  3. Kiran Siddiqui as Anna
  4. Farhan Alam as Dr. Karim
  5. Bazelah Mustafa as Saboor’s Friend
  6. Ayesha Pervaiz as Biff
  7. Sibtain Ali as Chip
  8. Aamir Azbi as Kipper

 

 

 + Plot
After the tragic death of her mother, Anna is traumatize and emotionally vulnerable during the upbringing by her beloved father and dedicated nanny. To treat her mental illness, Dr. Karim is introduced in her life.

 

 
+ High Points

i – A nicely executed directorial play by Bazelah Mustafa. After this play and Soch, people wonder if she may be the next best choice for a director.

ii – Samhan Ghazi gives a very interesting performance as Saboor, a high class, concerned father. I am very pleased to see that he is making himself stronger as an actor and keep pushing himself to grab more appealing roles, which is healthy for any performer who is serious for his career.

iii – Time to time, Shabana Hasan keep reminding us as to why she is a terrific actress. Her character of low class, caring nanny made the character an interesting choice to play this role.

iv – The way Anna’s character was treated that is her lines in the start were intentionally inaudible. But in the third act, her character is able to speak clearly and act responsive was very professionally written and directed.

v – The actress, Kiran Siddiqui should be equally admired for her believable performance especially including Anna’s sudden alarming seizures. Other Honorable Mentions: Rest of the cast.

vi – The props and set design was effectively constructed. It gave enough space for the movement of the performers and to see two places activity simultaneously.

vii – The chemistry between Samhan Ghazi and Shabana Hassan was compelling to watch. Perhaps, we may be able to see them together again in other plays’ lead roles.

viii – I liked how the play comes to its end. No filmy ending was given, kept within the dimensions of reality.

ix – The script is interestingly written, in terms of dialogues and storytelling.

 

 

+ Low Points
i – Would anyone volunteer and tell me, whose character’s journey this play was based on? Anyone? We all thought it was Anna but that was not the case. We can come close by saying; it was her father, Saboor whose relationship with two different types of females was shown and shifted except… it was not his story either.

ii – Most of the scenes didn’t relate with the main plot. If Saboor’s love interest scenes were cut short or with the Nanny, it would have not made any difference excluding for the play’s time length was reduced.

iii – There were times where the actors were still performing but no light was focused on them or was too quickly switched off for the transition of the scenes.

iv – There was a musical sequence, that needed to be performed during the play. The audience did witness the dimming of the lights but nothing really happens apart from the music being played in almost pitch darkness for few minutes. Naturally, a technical issue was occurred behind this incident. But no one from the team gave any explanation on it for its absence.

v – A proper production design with its original look would have been praise worthy. The black color sets could have been used in the first two acts, while the original look set design is replaced in the third act to match the tone of the play.

 

 
+ Overall

Perahan is a beautifully acted play about value of relationships and human emotions understanding that has come to the light.

 

 

Rate: 3.75 out of 5 stars