A review on Pakistani Comedy theatre play, Da Bhagi Marg (2017). It was performed at NAPA’s International Theatre Festival 2017.
- Directed & Costumes Designed by Rauf Afridi
- Written by Dairo Fo
- Set Design by Javed Shb
Da Bhagi Marg is an adaptation of Dairo Fo’s famous play ‘Accidental death of an Anarchist’. Some of his work regular playgoers requested that he write the play to provide counter information to the misinformation being propagated about the event by the media. He further researched the case thoroughly, drawing from two officials enquirers as well as facts shared by friendly journalists and lawyers. His aim was to present this counter information in a way that would be accessible to all.
This is the second theatre play Rauf Afridi has directed. The first one was for the kids by the name of ‘Tarzan’.
Da Bhagi Marg’s first 20 – 30 minutes was in Pashto language while the rest of the play is in both Urdu (majorly) language.
+ Full Cast
- Azaib Khan as Jaali
- Addy Khan as Insp Daar
- Hammad Khan as SP
- Essa Khan as Constable
- Aham Ali Khan as Jasmine Farooqi
- Rauf Afridi Insp Khattak
Accidental death of an Anarchist is a form of political theatre. An Anarchist died while in police custody for questioning about a bombing in which he played no part.
+ High Points
i – Addy Khan played the role of Insp Daar; his performance was quite good and was able to show his talent as musician briefly. Other Honorable Mentions: Hammad Khan.
ii – The costumes worked the most suitable way for the characters.
iii – For this comic play, in the cast we have Addy Khan, Hammad Khan and Rauf Afridi as attractive star power.
iv – The set design was soundly considered and built.
v – The ‘two’ endings was a good thought and drove well for its closing.
+ Low Points
i – Stereo Type / Racist Jokes are extremely offending to any people / race you are targeting to. People who use this kind of humor to uplift their plays / projects are delusional to think that they would be respected or their work to be considered as good grade. If this humor was inserted in handful of punch lines only then to some extend would have been ignored. I know that half of the crowd was filled with the Pashto people who were ‘enjoying’ your play. I have no words to say for them.
Really! I genuinely admire your performances and liked your debut play ‘Tarzan’ where I gave its positive review too. You are not just somebody who is directing plays… you are Rauf Afridi! Make plays with good, creative humor where people remember you and your work with high esteem.
Bad comedy is no comedy. If a lay person had directed this play with this kind of humor, then I would have understood perfectly well the reason behind it. But you don’t need this type of humor to leverage your work. I know and strongly believe that you can do really, really good work with full of praises.
ii – The humor was so… childish… that in the entire play I laughed only once when I saw that two of my friends (sitting beside me) had their eyes shut and literally sleeping.
iii – There were no subtitles during Pashto scenes. I did not understand that what was the use of multiple LED monitors fixed on the higher wall for? They never played even once in the play. I wanted to know what is happening in those scenes where its audience was enjoying so much. I waited for the play to start in Urdu and… (Sigh).
Painful as it is, Da Bhagi Marg fails to add fresh, good laughs to Rauf Afridi’s great theatrics gift.
Rate: 0.75 out of 5 stars