Mughal-E-Azam-play
A photo of the live performace at Delhi in 2016 of Mughal-E-Azam, the stage musical

The classic 1960 film Mughal-E-Azam has been remade into an extravagant Broadway-style musical which will soon be staged at NCPA Mumbai. The epic love story of Prince Salim and the beautiful courtesan Anarkali has captivated audiences for generations, and it can now be enjoyed by theatre lovers in its new avatar. The heart-wrenching tale of forbidden love, for which Salim went to war with his father, Emperor Akbar, made history in Indian cinema when it was released almost 60 years ago. It was produced at a higher cost than any other previous movie, and also became the highest grossing Indian film ever at the time. Directed by K. Asif and starring Dilip Kumar, Madhubala and Prithviraj Kapoor, the black-and-white cinematic masterpiece was digitally coloured and re-released in 2004 to further box office success.

Director Feroz Abbas Khan (of Tumhari Amrita fame) has teamed up with the producers of the film, Shapoorji Pallonji, and the NCPA to painstakingly recreate the historical drama for the stage, roping in some of the industry’s finest technicians to work on the production. The film was renown for its sheer grandeur and attention to detail, and the visual experience of the play will be no less exhilarating. An astonishing cast and crew of more than 300 people have worked tirelessly to bring the musical back to life.

Khan was adamant that his version of Mughal-E-Azam will have live music and singing, and so the cast has been chosen specifically with that in mind. All but two of the original songs from the film have been retained and will be performed live by the actors on stage. Audiences can expect a nostalgic trip down memory lane with renditions of Lata Mangeshkar classics such as Pyar Kiya to Darna Kya and Teri Mehfil Mein Kismet Aazma Kar. The glamorous Mughal-era costumes have been designed by none other than Manish Malhotra, while the captivating dance sequences have been choreographed by Mayuri Upadhya. The spectacular Mughal-E-Azam musical play will be staged at the NCPA in Mumbai from 24 June, 2017 to 2 July ,2017, with tickets priced between Rs. 500 and Rs. 7500.

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