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“The quality of mercy is not strained, it droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven…”

The vicinity of Block C Hyderi resonated with this powerful monologue uttered by the most powerful character, Portia, a princess and a daring lover, carved out by the pen of the greatest dramatist of the world, William Shakespeare. Many fans of literature, teachers and students from various schools, colleges and universities, prolific figures of the educational and journalism sectors, revered politicians gathered on Friday, the 26th of March, 2021 to witness a theatrical enactment of the most famous Shakespearean play of its time, “The Merchant of Venice” at Badri High School.

Being an emblem of change and literary renaissance, this play is originally believed to have been written in the 16th Century. The play and its characters have been talked about for ages because of their strength and values. As a part of the syllabus of Grade VIII Literature, it has always appealed and exalted the students with the implications and connections it has, with the present time, being one of the many qualities for a classic to have.

Having practiced for a whole month, it would be wrong to not acknowledge the efforts, time, energy, precision and will put in by the students of Grade VIII including those who were not a part of the cast, but, ensured the smooth transitioning from Scene I to Scene II and so forth. All the hard work bore fruit when dignitaries, virtuosos in their fields, parents, teachers, and other distinguished guests crowded the front ground of BHS, not leaving a single seat vacant.

The excitement of the crowd was visible on the entry of a character or the delivery of a potent dialogue. The applause roared through Al Mohallatul Burhaniyah many a times, during all the scenes, which proved to be motivational for our young actors. 

Behind this phenomenal performance, the consistent toil of more than a month was involved, with the contribution of teachers and parents. The journey started when a well-known theatre director, Mr. Mehdi, was invited to take a session with students briefing them about kinds of acting required on stage. After that, continuous practice sessions ensued with Ms. Tasneem Ammar Najmuddin, Grade VIII English teacher. Weeks before the actual show, a Costume Committee took over so that our actors could be clad in the finest of attires prominently worn by the class of aristocrats, merchants and money lenders in the Elizabethan era. Once the costumes were finalized, a Props team started creating customized props for the scenes of the play, complimented by the beautiful backdrops that were to highlight the setting of each scene. Once the ball started rolling, the marketing team started creating profiles of each student with the name of the character he/she would be. The light and sound on the day of the event was remarkably handled by our highly tech savvy IT team, in addition to the virtual telecast of the show for those who could not be a part of the physical audience because of the strict observance of the SOPs.

The beautiful eve ended on a heartfelt birthday wish to our respected Chairman, a wise and legendary figure in the field of education and capacity building, Janab Naeem BhaiSaheb, as the date happened to be his birthday. All the guests showered their love and appreciation for the play by sharing their appreciation via comments.

“An excellent amateur production—the costumes, sets and props showed a pragmatic touch. The comic element was well brought out and I wish the team best of luck for future productions,” commented TDC Director, Abbas Husain.

Alina Irfan from PABWRP wrote on the comment card, “What a marvelous performance by our younger smart kids. Mesmerized by this talent. Hats off to the teachers and the supporters of the program.”

“The Shakespearean night at BHS was an absolute delight to witness. The students not only enacted it but they were actually into the character they presented.  The cooperation in the change of scenes was commendable and their discipline was a delight,” shared trainer and motivational speaker Arwa Sh Khuzaima.

Faisal Sheikh from the provincial government shared, “Incredible program full of discipline—the confidence of participants and organizers stage design was outclass.”

Sh Zoaib bhai Mithaiwala who spent time praising the performers after the show wrote,

اشااللہ۔ قابل مبارکباد ہیں بدری سکول کے سرپرست اعلیٰ، محنتی اساتذہ طلبہ و طالبات جن بچوں نے ڈرامے میں بھرپور کردار ادا کیا۔ میں بحیثیتِ سینئر ممبر آرٹس کونسل کے بے شمار ڈراموں مشاعروں اور دیگر ادبی پروگرام دیکھتا رہتا ہوں۔ یہ کسی بھی معیاری پروگرام سے کم نہیں ہے ہے۔

حیرت کے مارے دریچے روشن ہو گئے گئے۔ چاہے اداکاری کو یا جملوں کی ادائیگی، ڈرامے کے کسی بھی پہلو کو کسی بھی معیاری پروگرام سے کم نہیں سمجھا جا سکتا۔ بہت خوب

May BHS, in the same way, keep equipping the youth with confidence and character, the combination destined to bring success! Ameen.

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