Saturday, November 26, 2011

Dr Fouzia Saeed’s Forgotten Faces launched at Lok Virsa

Jumbo Editorial Team

“Forgotten Faces: Daring woman of Pakistan Folk Theatre” authored by Dr Fouzia Saeed was launched at Lok Versa in Islamabad on November 25.

“Women have and play a vital role in the success of theatre, in taking entertainment to the people, yet they are not given their due credit,” Dr Fouzia Saeed observed during her speech at the book launch ceremony which was attended by National Heritage and Integration Federal Secretary, Faridullah Khan, veteran actor and the wife of renowned singer Inayat Hussain Bhatti, Naznin Mano, along with a number of intellectuals and civil society members.

Dr Fouzia Saeed, who is a PhD from the University of Minnesota, disclosed that she started research on Pakistan’s folk theatre in 1980 and has observed women “perform daringly in theatre”. She felt that entertainment and creativity arts were closed to women.

The book is focused on the life of Bali Jatti, a renowned theatre actress who spent her life promoting Punjabi folk theatre. But as the author dwells deeper into Jatti’s life, she reveals a story not of fame and fortune but of tragedies and violence.

Bali Jatti, the first women to own a travelling stage theatre in Punjab, did not allow her daughter to join her profession. She knew of the stigmas that marred it.

Speaking on the occasion, Abida, Jatti’s daughter, said that she’s proud for someone in the country wrote a book on her mother, who played a constitutive role in showbiz. She said her mother made her name at a time when there was no media.

Fatima Jinnah Women University’s Head of Communication Department, Dr Shamim Zaidi, said that the book takes the reader “onto a journey hand-in-hand with the author, describing the book as a collage of our artists, our culture and traditions which paints the picture of the world of these artists inwards.

Abbas Jutt, son of the famous folk singer Ashiq Butt, and Samia Akhtar, the grand daughter of Bali Jatti enthralled the audience by singing a few famous folk songs.

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