BHOPAL : ‘Duhai Luqman’, a Hindi-Urdu adaptation of Moliere’s popular French farce ‘The Mock Doctor’ was staged here on Tuesday – the second day of seven-day comedy drama festival at the Shaheed Bhawan Auditorium. The musical play was directed by Nazeer Qureshi and presented by ‘Karvaan’ theatre group of Bhopal.

Jean-Baptiste Poquelin, known by his stage name Molière was a French playwright and actor who is considered to be one of the greatest masters of comedy in Western literature. Among Molière’s best known works are The Misanthrope, The School for Wives, Tartuffe, The Miser, The Imaginary Invalid and The Bourgeois Gentleman.

Despite his own preference for tragedy, which he had tried to further with the Illustre Théâtre, Molière became famous for his farces, which were generally in one act and performed after the tragedy. Some of these farces were only partly written, and were played with improvisations over a vague plot outline. He also wrote two comedies in verse, but these were less successful and are generally considered less significant. Later in life Molière concentrated on writing musical comedies, in which the drama is interrupted by songs and/or dances.

“Duhai Lukman’ revolves around a barber Jumman who pretends to be a doctor, at the behest of his wife Zubeda. He goes to treat a girl Shamim who is pretending to be mute as she thinks that it is the only way to marry her beloved Ashique Ali. The entry of the mock doctor and how he creates opportunities for the meeting of the two lovers forms the rest of the story. The play ends with the marriage of Shamim and Ashique Ali. Sets, costumes, light and music were used aptly which highlighted the mood of the play.

“It is a pure comedy and unlike other plays, has no serious moral lesson or purpose. It was basically staged just to entertain people. Most of the plays written by Moliere are of the comedy genre. Staging a comedy is no less challenging. One can make people cry easily, but it is hard to make them laugh,” said Qureshi.

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