Membership

Friends of Ajoka is a group of eminent people, organization, interested in promoting theatre of high quality and social commitment by supporting the work of Ajoka in this regard.

The group includes leading personalities from fields as diverse as corporate sector, art & culture, media, academia, and civil society groups. Being a friend of Ajoka you have already become a part of the movement for meaningful and quality theatre in Pakistan.

It will entitle you to:
• Complimentary Invitations of AJoka Performances, throughout the year
• Reserved seats during the performances
• 25% discount on Ajoka Products
• If you would like to become a member, please fill the membership form (attached behind).
• Make a cheque in favor of “Ajoka Theatre Art Centre Fund” and send it to office address i.e. 2nd floor 65 commercial area, Lahore cantt.

Membership Charges
Adults: Rs. 5,000/- per year
Couples: Rs. 8,000/- per year
Students: Rs. 1,500/- per year







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Theatre for Peace News & Events Upcoming Event

Ajoka has launched a "Theatre for Peace" project to promote peace in South Asia and cooperation between theatre groups of India and Pakistan. During the next two years Ajoka in partnership with theatre groups in India and Pakistan, will organize theatre festivals, seminars, workshops and collaborative productions devoted to peer-building. A meeting of the steering committee consisting of theatre and civil society personalities from India and Pakistan was held in January in Lahore to approve the plans.

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Ajoka has launched a "Theatre for Peace" project to promote peace in South Asia and cooperation between theatre groups of India and Pakistan. During the next two years Ajoka in partnership with theatre groups in India and Pakistan, will organize theatre festivals, seminars, workshops and collaborative productions devoted to peer-building. A meeting of the steering committee consisting of theatre and civil society personalities from India and Pakistan was held in January in Lahore to approve the plans.
  • Aaj rang Hai
    Ajoka held an 8-day festival of major Ajoka plays “Aaaj Rang hai” to mark its 30th anniversary. 7 plays were staged in 8 days for a packed and enthusiastic audience. The last show was also attended by Kewal Dahliwal, Artistic Director of Manch Rang Manch and President of Virsa Vihar cultural centre, Amritsar who had specially come to attend the concluding ecermony of the festival.


  • Dara at National Theatre
    National Theatre UK has announced its programme for 2015 starting with an adaptation of Ajoka Theatre’s famous play “Dara”. Shahid Nadeem’s script has been adapted by tanya Ronder and is being directed by Nadia Fall. The play opens at National Theatre’s Lyttleton Theatre on 20 January and the first season will conclude on 4 April 2015. “Dara”s writer Shahid Nadeem and Ajoka’s Artistic Director Madeeha Gauhar will attend the Press Show of the play on 27 January.
    and also participate in platform discussions about the play and the 17th Century Mughal Prince Dara Shikoh. This is the first time that a play be a Pakistani playwright is being presented at the National. Ajoka considers it a great honor to be able to reach British audience with a play about peace and religious harmony.

    More informatIon about the play and the dates available at National Theatre website : www.nationaltheatre.org.uk
    (look for what’s on or Dara)


  • International Visitors
    A delegation of U.S Institute of peace visited Ajoka office to discuss collaboration on issues of mutual interest. The delegation was led by Dr. Maeed Yousaf and included officials of USID’s Islamabad office.

    Earlier Kewal Dhaliwal of Manch Rangmanch Amritsar and Pran Nevil visited Ajoka office in connection with Theatre for Peace Project.

  • Interviewed by America
    Ajoka’s Shahid Nadeem was interviewed by America Abroad Media radio on “The Power of Art in a Changing Middle East”. The interview was aired by US radios and also on AA website. In the interview Shahid answered questions about Ajoka’s commitment to social change and production of plays on bold and sensitive social and political topics. Other performing artists interviewed were from Morocco, Egypt and Lebanon.


  • Theatre for Peace blog
    A Theatre for Peace blog has been launched to promote the cause of peace through theatre. T4P is a joint venture of Pakistan’s Ajoka and India’s Manch Rang Manch. T4P activities will be publicized on this blog. Dialogue on peace-related issues will also take place on this blog. The blog Id is www.theatre4peace.com


  • Ajoka at ILF
    Ajoka Artistic Director Madeeha Gauhar and Executive Director Shahid Nadeem attended the 2nd Islamabad Literary Festival on 26-27 April. They were on the panel on theatre. Others in the panel were Rahat Kazmi, Sheema Kirmani and Zian Ahmad. Shahid was also on the panel on Manto where a presentation of his film on Manto was also shown. the panel included Sarmad Khoosat, the director of the film, Asghar Nadeem Syed and Zahida Hina.


  • Barri in New York
    An English version of Ajoka’s “Barri”, first performed in Lahore in 1987, was presented at Castillo Theatre on 22 February. The play called “Acquittal” was translated by Tahira Naqvi and directed by Dan Friedman, Artistic Director of Castillo. Shahid Nadeem attended a Q&A session after the show.


  • Burqavaganza at Stanford
    Ajoka;s famous play “Burqavaganza” was performed at the South Asia Center of Stanford University, California on 7 February. It was directed by Vidhu Singh of Rasanova Theatre, san Francisco. The performance was followed by a talk on “Theatre in the Time of Jihad” by Shahid Nadeem. The event was well-attended and appreciated.

“Bulha"
Alhamra, Lahore: 21 November
Gurgaon, Delhi: 30-31 November


"Lo Phir Basant Aee"
Alhmara, Lahore: 10 November
PNCA: 15-16 November
To Advertise Click here


AJOKA and PEACE
Ajoka has been committed to the ideals of peace and tolerance, within Pakistan and in the region. Ajoka has collaborated with theatre activists from other countries of South Asia particularly from India & Bangladesh, even in times when any contact across the border was considered treason. The first play performed by Ajoka, "JALOOS" was written by the veteran India revolutionary playwright Badal Sircar. Ajoka has worked with the (late) Safdar Hashmi, Anuradha Kapoor, Ratti Bartholomew, Kamla Bhasin and Kewal Dhaliwal. Ajoka first performed in India in 1989 when "ITT was staged in Delhi. The plays which have performed in India since include "K.ALA MEDA BHES" (in Delhi, Kolkatta and Chandigarh in 1997), "AIK THEE NANI (in Delhi in 1999 & 2003 and Bombay in 2004), "DUKHINI (in Delhi, Chandigarh and Kolkatta in 2000) and "BORDER-BORDER" (in Chandigarh and Amritsar , in 2001 and 2005 respectively). In Nov. 2003, "BULLHA" was first performed in several cities of Indian Punjab including Amritsar, Patiala, Ludhiana, Jalandhar, Chandigarh and Jammu.
Ajoka has organized Panjpaani Indo-Pak theatre festivals to promote the cause of peace. These festivals were held in 2004-2009. Ajoka has launched a Theatre for Peace programme in collaboration with various Pakistani and Indian theatre groups. Ajoka is the only Pakistani group which has performed in India from Srinagar to Kerala and from Amritsar to Kolkata.


OBJECTIVES
To do socially-meaningful theatre and thus contribute to the struggle for a secular, humane, just and egalitarian society in Pakistan.To promote theatre in Pakistan by blending traditional theatre forms with modern techniques and to provide entertainment which has a social relevance.


ORIGIN
Ajoka, which pioneered the theatre movement in Pakistan, was set up in 1983 by a group of young people led by Madeeha Gauhar, a TV actress and theatre director. Ajoka's first play, Badal Sarkar's "Jaloos", was performed in Lahore in 1984, in a house lawn in defiance of the strict censorship laws. Since then Ajoka has been continuously performing socially-meaningful plays within Pakistan and abroad. It has now over two dozen original plays and several adaptations in it's repertoire. Ajoka Theatre is a non-profit making non-commercial voluntary democratic organization. It's members come from varied class and social backgrounds.
Ajoka is financially independent. It has also worked on theatre projects with like-minded national and international NGOs, for which expenses are shared.


OUTREACH
Ajoka attaches great importance to developing contacts with theatre groups in other countries, particularly in Asia. It has long-standing relations with theatre groups in India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri-Lanka, the Philippines and has worked on joint productions with several groups of these countries and the International Drama and Education Association (IDEA). Within Pakistan Ajoka has worked with NGOs such as the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan, the Family Planning Association of Pakistan, the WWF, the Goethe Institute, the Heinrich-Boll Foundation, the War Against Rape and the Alhamra Arts Council. It has a special relationship with the women's movement and a large number of Ajoka plays have addressed the gender issue. Ajoka also has close relations with the US-based Theatre without Borders.