Ebrahim Alkazi
Ebrahim Alkazi

President Kovind, PM Modi condole demise of theatre doyen Ebrahim Alkazi

ANI | Updated: Aug 05, 2020 02:47 IST


New Delhi [India], Aug 5 (ANI): President Ram Nath Kovind and Prime Minister Narendra Modi have both condoled the demise of Ebrahim Alkazi, a stalwart in contemporary Indian theatre, who passed away here on Tuesday.
"Ebrahim Alkazi, doyen of Indian theatre, mentored and inspired generations of artists. His death leaves a void in the world of performing arts. A Padma Vibhushan recipient, his legacy will live on. My condolences to his family, students and art lovers," President Kovind tweeted in both Hindi and English.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi said Alkazi will be remembered for his efforts to make theatre more popular and accessible across India.
"His contributions to the world of art and culture are noteworthy too. Saddened by his demise. My thoughts are with his family and friends. May his soul rest in peace," PM Modi wrote on Twitter.
Born on October 18, 1925, in Maharashtra, Alkazi who studied at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art began his career with Sutan Padamsee's theatre group, before going on to set up his own theatre company in 1952.
He served as the director of the National School of Drama from 1962- 1977 and was instrumental in training actors such as Naseeruddin Shah, Om Puri and Nadira Babbar.
Alkazi directed over 50 plays, which included "Tuglaq" by playwright Girish Karnad, "Ashadh ka ek din" by Mohan Rakesh and Dharamvir Bharti's "Andha Yug". He also directed several Greek tragedies and Shakespeare's works.
An art collector, Alkazi was founder and director of the Art Heritage Gallery in New Delhi.
For his contribution to the arts, Alkazi was honoured with the three Padma awards- the Padma Shri in 1966, the Padma Bhushan in 1991 and the Padma Vibhushan in 2010. He also was the recipient of the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in 1962.
Tributes poured in for the celebrated theatre doyen, who is survived by his daughter Amal Allana and Feisal Alkazi, both theatre directors. Alkazi's wife Roshan Alkazi died in the year 2007.
Filmmaker Mira Nair said on Twitter: "Rage against the dying of the light - RIP Athens great #EbrahimAlkazi - a man who taught us how to see."
Actor Anupam Kher too took to Twitter to post a small video and posted: "My acting Guru #EbrahimAlkazi Saab passed away today. The tallest man ever in our lives. He taught us not only about theatre, acting or dramas but also about life. He made us discover ourselves. He was our reference point for great acting. He will be MISSED. Om Shanti!!"
Calling him "the true architect of the Modern Indian Theatre," Nawazuddin Siddiqui tweeted:". The Doyen who possessed the extreme knowledge in all the aspects of ART. The magician who nurtured many greats of theatre. May your brightest spark from the heaven keeps us enlightening."
Actor and Rajya Sabha MP Raj Babbar paid tributes to his Guru. "At the NSD he introduced us to the idea of Performing Arts, it's social commitment & relevance in strengthening society. The way he mingled tradition with modern idioms was masterly. Your demise is a personal loss. RIP Sir." Babbar tweeted.
Ambassador of France Emmanual Lenain conveyed his sadness at the demise of Alkazi. "Torch-bearer of the fine arts and culture, he received the Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters from France for his outstanding contribution to promoting these diverse fields," Lenain wrote on Twitter.
The National School of Drama family mourned the passing of the threatre legend and its ex-director. "This is a great loss to the country and specially to the Theatre World," the NSD tweeted.
Actor and director Nandita Das posted on Twitter: "With Alkazi sahab an era of theatre, art and culture dies today. I have vivid memories of meeting him as a child. Then did plays with both his children, the wonderful Amal Allana and Feisal Alkazi. Anybody who passed out of NSD or was even in its vicinity learnt from him." (ANI)

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