Archive for September, 2018

Book Launch: “HERMITAGE”- Reading and Conversation with Aamer Hussein

Thursday, September 6th, 2018

Aamer Hussein-01

Fiction writer AAMER HUSSEIN is in Karachi for the publication of Hermitage (Ushba), his experimental new collection of stories, which intersperses moments of history, family memories, and retellings of classic parables with photographs and other images.

Here is a chance to hear him read from his new work, and talk to renowned critic Muneeza Shamsie and Asif Farrukhi about the new directions his fiction has taken, his love of short forms, and his attachment to the city of his birth.

About the Author:

Born in 1955 in Karachi, he moved in his teens to London, where he still lives. He is a frequent visitor to Karachi. Hermitage, his most recent collection and his first in nearly four years, is published this month in his native city.

Aamer Hussein is the author of several collections of stories, notably Cactus Town, The Blue Direction, Insomnia and The Swan’s Wife; a novella, Another Gulmohar Tree; and a novel, The Cloud Messenger. His Urdu fiction has appeared in Dunyazad, and he is a regular contributor to Dawn.

Date: Wednesday, 12th September 2018

Time: 07:00PM – 08:30 PM

Place: Faraar Gallery, The Second Floor (T2F)

Entry: Free, It’s your donations that keep us going!

Book Launch: Bheerh Mein by Azra Abbas

Wednesday, September 5th, 2018

Azra Abbas-01

Azra Abbas will read from her latest collection of poetry, “Bheerh Mein”, as well as from her previous books, and will be joined in conversation by Asif Farrukhi.

About the Author:

A leading contemporary poet of Urdu, Azra Abbas, has already authored five previous collections of poetry, including an extended prose poem in a stream-of-consciousness style, entitled Neend ki Musafatain. She has also published a work of fiction; and a biographical memoire, also available in an English translation entitled “Kicking up Dust”, in which she juxtaposes her childhood life with the realities of the middle-class she grew up in. Azra Abbas is well-known for her modernist stance and outspoken handling of themes related to everyday-experiences, especially from a woman’s perspective. Her new collection of poems Bheerh Main has just been published from Karachi.

Fiction writer and critic, Asif Farrukhi is the author of several books in Urdu, including collections of short fiction and essays in literary criticism. He has published translations of Pakistan’s writers in English and of international writing in Urdu. He contributes regularly to a range of English-language periodicals from Karachi and is the founder-editor of Duniyazad, a literary book series. His latest publication is ‘Look At the City From Here’, an anthology of Karachi writings published by Oxford University Press, Pakistan. Asif Farrukhi is a public health physician and lives in Karachi.

Date: Monday, 10th September 2018

Time: 07:00PM – 08:30 PM

Place: Faraar Gallery, The Second Floor (T2F)

Entry: Free, It’s your donations that keep us going!

Sur ka Safar: Guitar aur Tabla

Tuesday, September 4th, 2018

Sur Ka Safr Digital

Join us at Faraar Gallery, T2F, for the latest performance in our Sur Ka Safar series, featuring Shallum Xavier, accompanied by  Yousuf Kerai on tabla.

About the performer:

Shallum Xavier has featured as a guitarist in the local music industry since the last two decades. With a very distinctive sound and stylistic diversity, Shallum’s mastery lies in improvisation and experimentation with genres such as blues, funk, jazz,  R & B , rock, and eastern classical fusion.

Shallum took up the guitar at age 9, inspired by rock, blues and contemporary jazz players and decided to embark on his quest for music. After his debut recording with Fuzon, Shallum has worked and collaborated with many gifted and popular local and international artists, toured many countries and recorded over ten albums as session guitarist and music producer.

Date: Saturday, 8th September 2018

Time: 07:30PM – 09:00 PM

Place: Faraar Gallery, The Second Floor (T2F)

Entry: Rs 500. First come, first served at the door

Group Therapy for Love with Saima and Muneeb

Monday, September 3rd, 2018

Group Therapy-01

Are you still hurting from how your significant other treats/ed you? or have you become numb and put a shield around yourself, promising yourself to never risk attachment? Do your relationship patterns repeat? The truth is that we attract the same kind of experience into our life until we heal the underlying trauma.

“Your task is not to seek for love but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it”….Rumi

Love is often unsatisfactory, thus it is an opportunity for personal growth. Because most of us carry barriers to love – shame, fear of abandonment/rejection or guilt, so the Universe keeps giving us the same. Our task then is to heal that which separates us from experiencing love—which is what we truly want since it is the scariest thing on Earth.

In this workshop participants will be introduced to group therapy for healing relationship difficulties. Participants do not have to share their real name and all participants will sign a confidentiality agreement. They will engage with therapeutic techniques including, but not limited to, hypnotherapy, compassionate listening and mindfulness meditation, free association and journaling, to heal past trauma to feel aliveness, hope and joy, gaining pluralistic perspectives on their relationship dynamics and issues. As unprocessed cognitive and emotional states block energy channels in the body, the workshop will also employ embodied forms of drama to help participants resolve their psychic knots for lighter and baggage-free living.

About Saima Shah:
Saima Shah (MBA, CHt) is a meditation teacher in Canada visiting Pakistan and offering a series of group therapy sessions. She has a background in business with two MBAs in finance and MIS. She has written a book called 111 questions on meditation, spoken on TEDx, and has facilitated personal development and emotional development workshops for corporate and community sectors for the last 10 years in Canada and in Pakistan.Visit to learn more about her. Her TED talk can be viewed at:

About Muneeb ur Rehman:
Muneeb ur Rehman is an applied theatre practitioner, educator and improvisation coach with ten years of experience in the creative arts industry. Trained from iO Chicago, he has practiced improvisational theatre for four years as performer and coach. He partners with schools, NGOs,  Youth Programs and commercial organizations to help them achieve their objectives through theatre, for education, wellness, development and critical thinking.  Over the summer of 2018, he taught improvisational theatre and curated shows across theatres in Nepal. He will be conducting a workshop employing theatre for wellness,  “I am Us, Us is me”, at the Global Performers Convention,  “Performing the World”, in New York in September.

Dates: Sunday, 9th September 2018
Timings: 04:00 PM – 08:30 PM
Place: Faraar Gallery, T2F
Registration Fee: Rs. 3000/-

*Participants will be provided pens, journals and stationery for workshop activities.*

**We only have capacity for 8 participants, so please sign up at the door from 3:30pm on the day of the event or email us at to register online. First come, first served.**

First Fridays Open Mic: September Edition

Monday, September 3rd, 2018

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Join us at Faraar Gallery, T2F on the first Friday of September 2018 for an open mic night featuring Karachi’s emerging talent!

T2F’s First Fridays Open Mic is a platform for musicians, poets, and comedians to perform, improvise and experiment in an informal setting.

Performers do not need to pre-register. Just show up with your voice, instruments, props or whatever else you may need to get perform. Look for our host who will put your name down on the list – spaces are limited, so first come, first served!

Date: Friday, 7th September 2018

Place: Faraar Gallery, T2F

Time: 06:00 PM – 08:30 PM

Entry: Free, donations much appreciated!

**Registrations start at 6pm, first come first served. All performers get maximum 10 minutes stage time.**

Comedy Scene: Hot Mic Night

Monday, September 3rd, 2018


Following the success of Comedy Scene’s Open Mic Nights in April and August, Comedy Scene presents their 3rd ‘Hot Mic Night’ on September 14th (Friday) at T2F!

‘Hot Mic’ is an open-mic night where aspiring stand-up comics take the stage and share their talent. Some of our talented stand-up comics have already signed up for this event. So do join us for the show and bring your friends.

It’s been more than two years for Comedy Scene, hosting such stand-up events. We feel a sense of pride in the improved number of talented comedians in Karachi, through the efforts of this platform and others. If you or someone you know wants to perform, please drop us a message on our Facebook page. Don’t be shy.

Our host for the open mic:

Sana Khan Niazi

Date: Friday, 14th September 2018

Time: 08:00 PM – 09:30 PM

Place: Faraar Gallery, The Second Floor (T2F)

Entry: Rs. 300/- First come, first served at the door

*Children under the age of 16 are not allowed*

Maa Dharti: Chapter 9

Saturday, September 1st, 2018


Chapter 9: Saagar Kinaarey Takhleeq ke Rung
Pakistan has been a signatory to the U.N. Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) since 1992. According to the ‘Aichi’ targets of the CBD, 10 percent of the total coastal area of Pakistan has to be declared as Marine Protected Area (MPA). Though we are still miles away from the target, the process has at least been initiated with Astola Island, off the coast of Pasni, being declared as the first Marine Protected Area (MPA) of Pakistan. Environmentalists and researchers have already identified several other more threatened areas on our coastal belt, and concerted efforts are now required to save the biodiversity of our coastal belt.
Join us for the next chapter of our Maa Dharti Project as we explore the importance of coastal bio-diversity and what we can do to join the jihad to save our Planet.
Guest speaker:
Afia Salam – freelance journalist and trustee of Indus Earth Trust believes that as an environmental activist, it is important to understand how gender roles have determined our relationship with water. The sidelining of women from policy making decisions on the environment has resulted in an unbalanced, unethical and unsustainable relationship with Nature. Afia Salam is also member of IUCN Commission on Education and Communications and Commission on Social Policy.
Date: Tuesday, 4th September 2018
Time: 06:30PM – 08:00PM
Place: Faraar Gallery, T2F
Entry: Free! It’s your donations that keep us going.


Unplugged Improv with LOLWaalay

Saturday, September 1st, 2018

Improv Comedy-01

After 6 years and many hundreds of shows later, we, the LOLWaalay will depart from our signature short-form style and bring you some never before seen improvised, experimental long-form! Also, in addition to our act, we will feature some of our funny friends as well!

If you were to tie the knot with long-form improv via arranged marriage, here is how a rishta aunty would describe it:

‘Long-form improvisation is an unscripted performance of anywhere between 20-90 minutes based off a single audience suggestion. Common elements include monologues, games and series of inter-connected scenes. Long form is much closer to theatre than short form. The final product often appears to be an improvised play. According to a popular improv director, long form is to jazz as short form is to pop’.
What an insightful and eloquent rishta aunty.

Come watch LOLWaalay unplugged and friends this Thursday at The Second Floor! Tickets Rs. 300 available at the venue. Gates open at 7 45 PM. Show starts at 8 PM.

About the Performers:

Akbar Chaudry
The Voice of the Troupe (and the Hair)

The long-time Artistic Director of the troupe, Akbar led the way when LOL Waalay established itself as the premier of comedy at a time when quality live shows across the country were unheard of. Since then, he also single-handedly put the underground stand-up comedy scene on the map by not only performing his own sold out shows, and with notable comedians like Saad Haroon, but also providing a platform to the emerging talent. His crazy curls and fluctuating voice are as much an inspiration as his signature performing style.

Ali Gul Pir
The Sayeen

The improv extraordinaire and mentor is the latest addition to the troupe. A film graduate, Ali initially started off as an improviser in a comedy ensemble put together by Azfar Ali, later moving on to another troupe with Saad Haroon. Soon after that, he broke major ground in the music industry with the very original and hilarious, Wadaira Ka Beta, which went on to become a cultural phenomenon for Pakistanis worldwide. Having become a successful recording artist ever since, the Sayeen is now revisiting his roots in improv with old friends, LOL Waalay. Did we say friends? We meant family. *wipes away tear*

Sannan Wastani
The Bad Boy/Corporate Suave

Long hailed as one of the funniest LOL Waala, Sannan truly personifies what it means to be the bad boy of comedy, if that is a thing. Famed for his priceless comic timing, off the cuff one-liners and true-to-life sense of humour, he started off with theater, starring in plays like, the Office, and its sequel. It was not long before he too was mesmerized by the ways of the LOL Waalay, and became a part of the cause. However, his true mastery lies in doubling as a suave corporate type during the day and comic beast at night. See the point about him being a bad boy? We don’t either.

Syed Muhammad Kumail
That Uncle/That Crazy Uncle

Like we said; here, at LOL Waalay, we are a family. And every family has that one uncle who hangs out with the kids once in a while, cracking jokes, telling old tales (a thousand times), and listening to classical raag at deafening levels. That’s our Kumail, or as we lovingly call him, Mamoo. Mamoo is an engineer by education, teacher by profession and comedian out of compulsion. Sometimes he mixes the three up. He is also a prolific stage actor (Nida Butt’s East is East, The Office 1 & 2) and outstanding stand-up comedian, in addition to being the present Artistic Director (read, protective parent) of the troupe.

Zubair Tariq
Mr. No-Opinion

Some argue that procrastination and laziness are signs of unbounded creativity. We argue in favour of those people, because Zubair has established himself on all three fronts. An introverted writer in real life, and a maniac on stage, he hails from a theater background (Nida Butt’s Grease, East is East, and The Office 1 & 2) and recently finished co-writing a screenplay. Also having a number of TV appearances to his name, Zubair sometimes likes to quietly stare at corners. Nobody is allowed to disturb him then. Oh and did we mention he plays swell guitar?

Date: Thursday, 6th September 2018
Time: 08:00PM – 09:30PM
Place: Faraar Gallery, T2F
Entry: Rs.300/- (Available at Venue)