With the historic opulence of the Qutb Shahi Tombs serving as a backdrop, an illustrious show titled ‘Weaver of Dreams – the passion of Muzaffar Ali of Kotwara’ held as part of the annual Krishnakriti Festival, organised by Kalakriti Art Gallery and Lahoti Foundation will greet Hyderabadis this weekend. Presented by veteran journalist and writer Satya Saran, the show promises to be a window to fashion designer, filmmaker Muzaffar Ali’s life, his childhood, the ideals that shaped him.
Its uniqueness lies in its attempt to showcase the blend of cultures — Lucknow with a toast of the pre-Indepedence era. The narrative presents his early years in Bombay, his Air India job, how it inspired him to bring together his first film Gaman . Not only the films, the stories surrounding the textile and craft woven into classics like Umrao Jaan and Anjuman find place in the proceedings. A series of short films will then highlight Muzaffar and his wife Meera’s journey into fashion, their label Kotwara, comprising a section that explores the diversity of the textile and craft industry in the country.
While models are to walk on the ramp in costumes reprising the popular characters in his films, the dancers re-enact iconic sequences from his films over the years. Ballets in Kathak mirroring the magic woven during ‘Jahan-e-Khusrau’ and Wajid Ali Shah festivals that the Alis host in Lucknow and Delhi will be followed by a segment elaborating on Meera Ali’s sensibilities and her contribution to the fashion label. This will also include their daughter Sana, whose segment will focus on her contemporary twist to Kotwara.
“A mutual friend of mine introduced me to Muzaffar Ali, with whom I shared long conversations that helped form the basis of the entire production. There is a beautiful blend of poetry, music and his romantic nature that comes to the fore in his work. The fact that we are talking about how some of his films were made, abandoned and his reactions to adverse circumstances in life makes for a great journey,” Satya Saran shares. That it’s premièring in Hyderabad is an aspect that excites her, “There’s a positive nervousness, remembering lines for an hour and a half, it feels exactly like being in a theatre.” The evening’s exclusivity is the fusion of the past with the present, the culmination of multiple art forms replete with live music, enough accessories (like flowers and lamps) to recreate the yesteryear aroma with authenticity. Multi-media extravaganza indeed! (Weaver of Dreams is on at Qutb Shahi Tombs, Hyderabad at 7:30 pm on January 6)