Sunday, January 28, 2018

Review of the play "Kya Dilli Kya Lahore"

Kya Dilli Kya Lahore is a script that needs careful treatment. It always walks that thin line of precarious peace. Full marks to the team for walking that thin line with aplomb.

The story is predictable - 2 soldiers on the border post, both lonely, get friendly with each other. They take digs at each other, play chess, and cards. Loneliness , I have learnt, is a great glue.

Every actor is so comfortable in their own space. Whether they have 2 minutes of appearance or 60, they all leave a mark. But the 2 lead actors truly bring the story alive on that stage. They make you laugh, cry and think. You see the broken fence right there, just like you see the broken heart when Umar Gul gives the steel tiffin to his friend and leaves.

On the technical side, two things deserve special mention:  The lights, and the stage.
I was very impressed with the use of lighting for the scenes involving the 2 army officers, and when Umar Gul makes an entrance from the audience side. But even otherwise, the lighting was used to fantastic effect on that stage. The shadows were dramatic and stark. They made a statement of their own.
The white screen was amazing. Madiha was a shadow behind that screen, as families usually are. And she darkened our world from right there.
The live music was a great touch too. Please retain it.

To the directors: Congratulations! Had I not seen it myself, I would not have believed that this play can be treated this way. You have a freshness that does not compromise on the excellence and yet brings something new to the delivery. Please try and retain that touch.

If you get a chance to see this play by this group (Varchasv Theater group - I paid special attention to that), please do make the time. It will be worth it.

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