Humayun Ahmed was a trendsetter playwright: Aly ZakerCultural Correspondent
From his vast experience as an actor of TV plays of about four decades, Aly Zaker observes that the trend of TV plays got a new dimension through Humayun Ahmed’s plays in the 1980s.
According to Aly Zaker, it was Humayun Ahmed, who first gave a realistic presentation of middle class society in his trendsetting TV plays.
‘Humayun broke the theatre style of the TV plays by introducing his works. The spontaneous dialogues and character depiction in his plays brought out a new trend,’ Aly Zaker told New Age.
‘Humayun's plays became so popular in the 1980s, a time when there was just one television channel, that many middle class families saved up only to buy a TV set to watch Humayun's serial,’ he added.
Aly Zaker, who began his acting career in TV in 1972, however, had his first appearance in Humayun Ahmed’s popular serial Bahubrihi in late 1980s. Ahmed, meanwhile, became a name as a playwright and novelist.
‘I played the character of Mama in the mega hit serial. The character was comic and also eccentric. While enacting the character I came to know the great man who creates a character with every possible detail yet giving the actor full freedom to enact it. He, with his extreme intelligence and wit, used to involve the actors in the characters that we could give out what he wanted to while enjoying the full liberty. And my character “Mama” became extremely popular,’ Aly Zaker told New Age.
After Bahubrihi, he acted in a few single-episode TV plays. Subsequently, he worked in Humayun’s another TV drama serial Aj Rabibar. ‘Yet again I got an eccentric character. My character was of an uncle of a family who is single and loves to try different abnormal experiences. I asked Humayun why he liked to fit me in peculiar characters, he answered me that my impassive way of doing comedy fits perfectly with the characters,’ said Aly Zaker.
He further added that one of his most favourite characters from Humayun Ahmed’s plays was the role of a surgeon in the single-episode play Abosar. ‘The role was very serious. While Humayun was a master in creating humourous roles he was also incomparable in bringing out some serious characters as well.’
Aly Zaker last worked with Humayun in a single-episode play aired in an Eid in around 2004-05. ‘But I had regular contacts with him. We even met in last May, when he last visited Dhaka during a break in his treatment in New York, USA,’ recalled Zaker.
‘I am a big admirer of him as a litterateur. He was not only a great writer he also had a great capability of winning the hearts.’
Through his almost four-decade career, Humayun penned about 322 literary pieces including novels, stories, plays, science fiction and essays. Director of eight movies, Humayun Ahmed also wrote several songs for his own films.
Humayun Ahmed, the most popular dominant figure in the field of literature and TV play, died on Thursday in New York after suffering from cancer.
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