From International Theatre Institute, World of the Performing Arts

Every year a renown theatre practitioner is asked to pen a message for the World Theatre Day. This year, a beautiful message about the sacred nature of theatre comes from a Pakistani playwright, director and journalist Shahid Nadeem.

Shahid Nadeem was born in 1947 in Sopore, Kashmir. He became a refugee at the tender age of 1, when his family had to migrate to the newly-created Pakistan after the 1948 war between India and Pakistan over the disputed state of Kashmir. He wrote his first play as a university student at the university of Punjab but started becoming a dedicated playwright when he started contributing from his political exile in London, plays for Pakistan’s dissident theatre group. Shahid Nadeem has written more than 50 original plays in Punjabi and Urdu and several adaptations of Brecht’s plays.

His plays have been translated into English and published by Oxford University Press, Nick Hern Publishers and in several anthologies. He was awarded the President of Pakistan’s Medal for the Pride of Performance in 2009. Shahid Nadeem’s plays are well-regarded for their bold socially relevant, sometimes tabooed subjects such as religious extremism, violence against women, discrimination against minorities, freedom of expression, climate, peace and Sufism. Several of his plays address the issues of Partition of South Asia and shared cultural heritage of the region. He combines contemporary social and political themes with traditional forms and folk heritage to present an entertaining and intellectually stimulating theatre. Music is an inherent part of his theatre productions. He teaches art of writing at Ajoka Institute for Performing Arts and the Institute for Art and Culture, Lahore.

To read more about Shahid Nadeem please visit:


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here