Students of Study Hall had a ‘visiting faculty’ amidst them on Tuesday. The expression on their faces was that of disbelief, joy and awe.
Disbelief because it’s not every day that a celebrity filmmaker, painter and designer like Muzaffar Ali visits their school. Joy because the occasion was a break from the routine class work. And awe because they could directly interact with the ace director.
Muzaffar Ali visited the school as part of Connect Lucknow’s Outreach programme to sensitise children and youth about their heritage and culture preservation, educate them about Lucknow’s history, traditions, art, crafts, food, music, dance, etiquettes, etc and inculcate a sense of pride in them for the city’s heritage.
Accompanying him were convener of Outreach, Jayant Krishna and member Chander Prakash. The school auditorium, packed to capacity, heard Krishna in rapt attention as he gave a power point presentation on the heritage of Lucknow.
Explaining why heritage was important, he said it instilled a sense of identity, provided an anchor in life. Ali advised the students to retain their childlike qualities. “You must use your energy in creating something out of nothing. For that, you must feel deeply and keep the child in you alive,” he told students.
The maker of ‘Umrao Jaan’ emphasised the power of poetry. And to understand real poetry, one must know Urdu, he said.
To this, school’s president Urvashi Sahni revealed that the school would soon start classes in Urdu.
Then followed the question-answer session in which students came up with some interesting queries. Kanishk Upadhyay wanted to know if we should be proud of a culture that we got from rulers who suppressed their people. Tanisha Gupta asked which historical monuments and buildings was the best symbol of power today.
In the end, the filmmaker had a sincere advice for them all: Think with your mind and feel with your heart.