Hitting all the right notes on the small screen these days is the phenomenal Deewar e Shab — a creation produced by Momina Duraid, and directed by Iqbal Husain. Set against the background of the deteriorating culture of music and dance celebrated by the courtesans of the 1980s, this dramatic venture boasts of an incredibly strong star cast: including the likes of Asma Abbas, Bushra Ansari, Zara Noor Abbas, Shahroz Sabzwari, Shehzad Sheikh and Nausheen Shah amongst others.
In this tale of Sitara Mahal (the courtesans’ sanctuary) and its many residents, if there is one person that has stolen our attention like none other, it is the beautiful and talented Zara Noor Abaas as Feroza Jahaan – the shining new star of the courtesans’ musical abode.
Here are all the times Zara shone bright for us.
We (and the rest of the world!) were spellbound by Zara’s perfect imitation of classic dance routines as she sways like a symphony in the first episode, looking like an absolute dream.
A shot taken from the earlier episodes, as Zara is seen embodying her role perfectly: a star courtesan in the making, who is an excellent student of the dancing arts, but still unworldly and naive when it comes to understanding the cunning ways of the world – a concern that is expressed by her mother, Sitaara Jahaan, as well.
We love Zara’s versatile range of work – we have seen her play victim to family’s vindictive planning in “Khamoshi” and later, a bubbly personality on the big screen as Haya in “Chhalawa” but her role in Deewar e Shab shows a compelling screen presence like never before. As graceful as a swan, Zara truly epitomizes her role of an artisan from the 1980s.
Zara looks like a Mughal princess from the olden times as seen here – ready for a nightly performance. Dressed in a flaming red pishwaas-style dress with traditional polki jewelry and floral adornments, she is a true dancing vision with movements that showcase a natural flair – reminding us of none other than Umrao Jaan.
A courtesan’s life is never all flowers and glamour. And so isn’t Feroza’s as the story steadily unfolds. Zara, we feel, is giving us the performance of a lifetime as she couples life’s tragedy with everyday glamour of a courtesan to deliver heart-wrenchingly realistic expressions that are truly commendable.