Again?

A strange thing has occurred – anything with *.blogger.com works – but the second you hit something.blogspot.com, all hell breaks loose. Nothing opens. I kid you not, and I’m wondering whether Pakistan’s government has imposed the blogging ban all over again? Anyone knowing anything about this, feel free to email me and let me know. This is ridiculous, otherwise.

With great difficulty, I’ve landed here, into the posting of things.

(ETA: Nothing was wrong: blogspot was misbehaving and apparently, that’s usual. Tragic. Google’s definitely the new Microsoft).

Ramadhan’s started tonight, with our first fast tomorrow although it’s started for Muslims based in America, so if you’re a Muslim and you’re reading this blog, wherever you are in the world, Ramadhan Mubarik (“congratulations on the start of the holy month”, although it seems so small when it’s translated).

And now, I should come up with something really productive since I really have no idea when I’ll be able to login again (if this blogspot love/hate relationship stands to continue indefinitely).

The Addams Family recently wrapped up production, although I’m not sure what the response was. Since very few of my circle actually bothered to turn up, I’m thinking it might not have been all that great. But that’s only a prediction, not fact, so don’t quote me on this.

A steady stream of traffic has been coming our way, courtesy of this blog, so maybe this is turning out to be a good idea after all. However, one suggestion: you could drop a comment at either the blog or the site, regarding your thoughts and opinions on it. Who knows? We might implement one of your thoughtful suggestions. I think I should put up news about our site on the site too, from time to time. At least let people know what’s happening, for those who don’t frequent this blog as much.

Among the theatrical production houses, a common stream of thought seems to be propagating like fire: the development of Islamabad’s first theater for theatrical productions. It’s true: we do need one, it sure would compensate for the limited seating Islamabad Club (bless it) currently offers. The problem with plays here, is that the commercial/advertising partners seem intent on making as much money (read: sell as many tickets as humanely possible) for a given show, so the result is, if you don’t queue up early, you might have bought the same priced seat, but have to sit on a stair or worse, stand. My line has always been: stretch the shows out for longer if necessary, and sell only the amount of tickets as there are seats. What’s the point, if you’re getting no value for money in terms of comfort? It isn’t fair at all. You pay, you should get what you pay for. It is that simple, and corporations in other countries recognize this. Sophistication (like corruption), begins at the very top.

Besides, I feel we’ve had enough adaptations and we should be ready for a little creative maturity and start developing original works of art. How long are we going to stay within the shadow of Hollywood, and not step into our own limelight? But really, how much can we take living off the creativity of others, is the far bigger question. I mean, enough is enough already, no? Real, original productions with real, original messages and real, original humor. “Real, original” being the watchwords in the sentence, apparently.

A desi writer member and friend, feels that creating an original play takes a lot of courage, which is natural. Or is the indirect point she’s making that we don’t possess any truly courageous talents in the country? Could be, but I disagree. I believe we’ve got the talent in the right sectors, but no one knows it yet, and why may I ask? Why aren’t more people stepping forward? And I don’t mean the people who think they can write, but the ones that know they can and do a good job of it? Why aren’t the truly talented playwrights really getting out there, and showing something to the world? Sure, another desi writer and friend and now producer, director and playwright, Osman Khalid Butt, with his house The Living Picture Productions, is out there but he’s just one person in a multitude of so many. I run a writer’s website, I interact with these talented individuals on a daily basis. My question is simple: why aren’t more of them out there? Why not show some confidence and pride in your work? Strive to be different; don’t feed on existing material. Create your own.

Besides the writing of things, we need serious, strong, committed actors not students right out of school or college or worse, working in other fields. They always end up with musical toned, pretentious, one-dimensional portrayals of otherwise, very interesting characters. Theater should be pursued as a dedicated field in our country.

How else are we going to spread the word?

The only way is up, people. Let’s not slow ourselves down, here.

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