Theatre festival Notuner Utsab - 2019 concluded on Thursday at Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy’s National Theatre Hall with Mangaldeep Foundation’s new play Lottery, performed by visually impaired actors- which garnered massive applause from the audience.
Directed by Nagorik Natya Sampradaya’s Mostafiz Shahin, the play featured visually impaired actors on stage, with eminent actor-director Sara Zaker being the dramaturge.
Despite being visually impaired, the performers brilliantly exceeded the expectations of the audience through their tantalizing performances.
Lottery narrated the story of middle-class crisis and inconsistencies in the name of yellow journalism, revolving a lottery ticket.
Renowned actor, theatre activist and former state minister of cultural affairs Asaduzzaman Noor applauded the performers after the staging of the play.
"The play became an exceptionally good creation because of all these actors. They read the script with their inner-eyes, felt the play within their beautiful soul and tremendously mastered the story with their amazing acting. We all have so many things to learn from them and their spirits"- Noor expressed his applause for the Lottery and its performers.
Honorary president of the International Theatre Institute (ITI) Ramendu Majumdar honored the director of the play Mostafiz Shahin after the play. The director conveyed his gratitude to every person associated with the play and expressed his wish to stage more shows in future.
Nagorik Natya Sampradaya provided the creative supervision and technical assistance to the production of Lottery, while non-governmental organization Prerona, who first introduced the idea to portray the visually impaired aspiring actors- also associated with the production.
Theatre troupe Nagarik Natya Sampradaya’s week-long national theatre festival ‘Notuner Utsab 2019’ concluded in the city on Thursday, evoking huge response from audience.
The festival featured seven new plays, each staged for the first time from 29 November to 5 December, every evening at Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA)’s National Theatre Hall.
A concluding ceremony was arranged at the venue prior to the staging of the closing play ‘Lottery’, directed by Mostafiz Shahin. The play featured visually impaired actors on stage, with actor-director Sara Zaker being the dramaturge.
Country’s renowned thespians joined the ceremony where four legendary theatre activist women- Ferdousi Mazumder, Lucky Enam, Shimul Yousuf and Jyotsna Biswas was awarded and honored for their tremendous contribution in Bangladesh’s theatre activities.
Legendary theatre activists Abul Hayat, Tariq Anam Khan, Professor Abdus Selim and Pantha Shahriar were also present at the ceremony alongside the four mentioned award-winners.
About the festival, Abul Hayat, who attended on behalf of Nagorik Natya Sampradaya’s Chairperson Aly Zaker, said “Nagorik started as the first theatre group in Dhaka which initiated the trend of theatre shows with ticket- for the sake of the survival of theatre artists. These past seven days, seven successful plays were staged with an unimaginable number of crowd who stood in line for tickets. We all are really happy for the support and also glad to honor these four legendary ladies in Bangladesh’s theatre sphere.”
Director Pantha Shahriar who received massive acclaim for his new play ‘Kalo Joler Kabbo’, inspired by William Shakespeare’s play ‘The Merchant of Venice’ featuring legendary actor Asaduzzaman Noor, told UNB that the response of the crowd in this festival was overwhelming.
“Instead of repeating prominent plays in festivals, Nagorik’s idea was to take an initiative which will promote new plays so that new directors-playwrights-performers can get inspired. We have seen humongous response from the crowd and we thank all our associates specially the Ministry of Cultural Affairs and Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy for supporting the initiative.”
Theatre troupe Nagorik Natya Sampradaya arranged the week-long drama festival in collaboration with cultural affairs ministry where Nagorik Natya Sampradaya, Sunamgonj Proscenium O Bandhan Theatre, Nagarik Natyangan Bangladesh, Porishor, Prachyanat, Monipur Theatre and Mangaldeep Foundation staged their plays.
A jury board consisting of Tariq Anam Khan, Professor Abdus Selim and senior members of Nagorik Natya Sampradaya selected the staged plays.
The festival commenced on 29 November with state minister for cultural affairs KM Khalid as the chief guest at the inaugural ceremony. Honorary president of the International Theatre Institute (ITI) Ramendu Majumdar, renowned thespian Mamunur Rashid, thespian-filmmaker Nasiruddin Yousuff Bachchu and Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy director general Liaquat Ali Lucky were also present at the inauguration as special guests.
Convener of the festival and Nagorik Natya Sampradaya vice president Sara Zaker delivered the welcome speech at the programme, which was then presided over by thespian Ataur Rahman.
On the first day, the play Kalo Joler Kabbo, directed by Pantho Shahriar was staged. It is an adaptation of Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice, casting Asaduzzaman Noor as Bhangari- a role which was inspired from the infamous character, Shylock.
This was followed by Shamim Shagor’s Radharomon on the second day. The third day showcased Akasey Phuitechhey Phul - Letokahon, directed by Dr Roton Siddique and Hridi Huq. An adaptation of Tagore’s Aruproton, directed by Saidur Rahman Lipon, was staged on the fourth day. Kazi Toufiqul Islam Emon’s Khwabnama, inspired by Akhteruzzaman Elias’s novel of the same name, was presented on the fifth day. O Mon Pahia, scripted and directed by Shubasish Sinha, was staged on the sixth day and Mangaldeep Foundation’s play Lottery, directed by Mostafiz Shahin was staged as the concluding play on Thursday.
The organizers informed UNB that the festival will return next year with even bigger arrangement and festivities.
Million-selling novelist Adriana Trigiani has a new publisher, but a familiar editor.
Dutton announced Tuesday that it had reached a two-book deal with the author, whose previous works include "The Shoemaker's Wife" and the "Big Stone Gap" series.
Trigiani had for years been published by HarperCollins, where she was edited by Maya Ziv, now with Dutton. "I love a reunion," Trigiani said in a statement. "Maya Ziv is a glorious editor, and I'm thrilled to be working with her again."
Her first book for Dutton, a Penguin Random House imprint, will be called "The Garden of Sundays" and will draw upon the author's life to explore such themes as home and love and grief. No release date has been set.
Trigiani, 50, is also a playwright and filmmaker who helped adapt her novel "Very Valentine" for Lifetime last summer.
Milan Kundera, the Czech-born author of "The Unbearable Lightness of Being" has been given back the citizenship of his homeland that he lost 40 years ago.
The Czech ambassador to France, Petr Drulak, told Czech public television he handed Kundera his citizenship certificate last week in his Paris apartment.
It's a result of Kundera's meeting with Prime Minister Andrej Babis in Paris last year.
Kundera fled Communist Czechoslovakia and has lived in France since 1975, and it is there that he published his most famous books, including "The Book of Laughter and Forgetting," "The Art of the Novel" and "Immortality." His later works, written in French, were not translated into Czech.
The 90-year-old lives in virtual seclusion, only travels to his homeland incognito and never speaks to reporters.
Acknowledging that architect Rabiul Hussain was not only a great poet in Bangladesh, but also a great architect and preacher of the nationalist viewpoint in the world of architecture- speakers at a memorial and recitation meeting here on Monday said he will live forever through the weight of his work and majestic creations.
Bangladesh National Museum, in association with the Ministry of Cultural Affairs organised the programme at the Sufia Kamal Auditorium of the National Museum.
State Minister of Cultural Affairs KM Khalid attended the memorial meeting as the Chief Guest. Bangla Academy Director General Habibullah Siraji, Liberation War Museum’s trustee Mofidul Hoque, Bangladesh’s Consulate Head of Mission and Ambassador in Tashkent Mosud Mannan, Artist Hashem Khan, renowned professor Syed Manzoorul Islam, cultural personality Syed Hasan Imam, Rabiul’s only son Jisan Hussain Robin, younger brother Pilot Captain Tarek Hussain, General Secretary of Sammilita Sangskritik Jote Hasan Arif, poet Tarik Sujat, renowned nuclear scientist and Chairman of Women Affairs Sub-Committee in Awami League Dr Sultana Shafi among others, spoke at the event with country’s renowned folklorist and the National Museum’s Board of Trustee President Professor Shamsuzzaman Khan in the chair.
President of National Poetry Council and DU Pro-Vice Chancellor poet Dr Muhammad Samad, Naila Afroze, Bhaswar Bandyopadhyay, Rupa Chakroborty, Shihab Sarkar, to name a few, recited Rabiul’s own written poetry while poet Aslam Sunny, Lily Haque, Tarik Sujat recited tribute poems to his memories.
The speakers reminisce about their memories with Rabiul Hussain and shed light on his life and influences in Bangladeshi modern literature and architecture.
“We can see how extraordinarily talented he was as an architect while looking at several of our public university properties, at the same time we know how majestic he was as a poet and litterateur. The Ministry of Cultural Affairs will take all the necessary steps as per the instruction of his family, to preserve his creative legacy for generations,” Minister KM Khalid acknowledged the great genius at the event.
“My eldest brother Rabiul was a family man. After the death of our father in our childhood, Miya Bhai (as Rabiul’s siblings used to call him, which he admired throughout his life) raised all of us nine siblings, but never demanded anything in return,” Rabiul’s younger brother Captain Tarek Hussain, a professional pilot, reminisced.
Dr Sultana Shafi said that despite being one of the legendary architects of Bangladesh, Rabiul had been acknowledged as a poet most of the time - and the architect society should protect and preach the legacy of Rabiul, who was a master architect as well.
Remembering his creative brilliance, the event’s chair Dr Shamsuzzaman Khan said that Rabiul was a genius with a generous heart and soul. “Apart from being a poet and litterateur, he was a maestro in architecture and one of the eminent members of our board of trustees. Soon we will bring out publications and memoirs on him (Rabiul) on behalf of the National Museum, which he rightfully deserves,” said the pioneering folklorist.
Besides being a member of the board of trustees both the National Museum and the Liberation War Museum, he was also a lifetime member of Bangla Academy and also served in various capacities at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Memorial Museum, children's cultural organisation Kendriyo Kochi Kachar Mela, National Poetry Council, International Film Critic Association of Bangladesh and the Institute of Architects, Bangladesh.
The Ekushey Award winning poet and architect breathed his last at the Critical Coronary Unit (CCU) of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU) on 26 November in the capital, at the age of 76.