Thursday 13 October 2022

"Ishq jale to jale aisa" staged by IDEA on 9.10.2022 in Andheri (Mumbai)

 "Ajanabi tum mujhe zindagi ki shaam me kyon mile?"
(O Stanger, whky did you meet me in the evening of life)

"Ajanabi tum mujhe zindagi ki shaam me kyon mile?
Milna tha to dopahar me milte
Kam se kam dopahar ka taap to dekh lete" 
(Amrita Pritam wrote for Imroz)

Imroz was not merely a stopgap relationship for Amrita but it symbolised a relationship that lifts a human  being much above the boundaries of expectations and sensuality. He was almost everyone for Amrita not just for a few years but for forty long years till Amrita bid adieu to this world. He neither had  hostility for her earlier and only marriage nor for Sahir Ludhiyanvi, her latter man of choice. In a scene when a person asks Imroz does he not feel deserted when Amrita shows her special reverence for Sahir, Imroz replies why should I feel so if she still cares for me too and has written so many verses for me and me only. It is noteworthy that the intense love of Amrita for Sahir was almost one-sided and both of them neither married nor lived together. They merely met each other on the occasion of poet meet events. And Imroz was really more lucky who got contiguity of Amrita, the epitome of compassion for crores of people around the world. Amrita was the most gracious lady for Imroz notwithstanding her older age by ten years.

The only time when Imroz is sort of visibly angry is when Amrita tells him to leave her as she is of the age approaching 80 and is of no use for him and he must search some other good female partner for him.

The facial expression and body language of Amrita perfectly matched with the age of Amrita she was playing. Each of her dialogue was delivered with a septuagenarian sigh. In later scenes her hanging body characterised her old age-related difficulty in moving. Her make-up and attire also enhanced the effect of genuineness. The face of Imroz truly depicted a selfless persona whose only aim is to facilitate Amrita. Mind it that Imroz is also a painter but he never cares if his fame is badly overshadowed by a global celebrity Amrita. He actually delights in it. 'Barkate' as he addresses Amrita is always uttered with deep respect and etiquette without any fail. He is still extremely respectful for Amrita when she slipped and broke her thigh bones making her unable to move even for one step. He lifts Amrita in his arms adorably and let her perch on the armchair on her wish. Yuktarth Shrivastava and others acted in it.

Once I thought that the time-gap in dialogue-delivery was more in case of Amrita but again thought that it must be usual for a 70+ years woman she was characterising. The man who played the adviser friend of Imroz was also perfect in showing the serious countenance befitting for an uncanny sort of friend like Imroz. There there was a Sootradhara (Compere) too with good Urdu accent and impressive narrating style.

Though this play was also depicted some biographical aspects of Amrita, the  main focus remained on Imroz. You can hardly cite a male life-partner living in a separate room and still hundred percent loyal to his living muse. 

It was definitely and enriching theatre-experience for me to watch such a play directed by adept Mujeeb Khan. The dialogues written by Sadique Ansari are realistic and easy to comprehend. 

Review by - Hemant Das 'Him'
Photos by - bejodindia blog
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