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Adi Pherozeshah Marzban

Gujarati Play Wright Adi Pherozeshah Marzban
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The Indian Gujarati Parsi writer, actor, director, and broadcaster Adi Pherozeshah Marzban is well known for his efforts to modernize Parsi theatre. He was born in Bombay on April 17, 1914. Before receiving his undergraduate diploma from Elphinstone in 1933, he attended Bharda New High School. In 1936, he left his job as a publicist for Western India Theatres to become the newspaper's editor and simultaneously work for the monthly comedy magazine Gupsup. He had started his career as a publicist for Western India Theatres. Marzban began directing plays at the beginning of the 1950s. On a scholarship offered by UNESCO, he went to Pasadena Playhouse in the US in 1953 to pursue further theatre arts expertise. In 1954, he wrote and directed Piroja Bhavan, a significant work of Parsi theatre and his first endeavor with Pesi Khandavala.

The practice of compensating and profit-sharing with amateur theatre company members was invented by him and his manager Pesi Khandalawala. Anand Pai, Shahdeo, Burjor Mistry, and other illustrious technicians worked on the play, which was a commercial success and changed the emphasis of Parsi theatre from historical dramas to farces and comedies. He co-hosted with C.C Mehta the renowned weekly radio program Buddhi Dhan Shak Mandal (Association for Dhan Shak), which he co-wrote around 5000 scripts for. He also apprenticed with Austrian painter Walter Langhammer to learn how to paint. He contributed to the growth of several accomplished actor-directors who continued the history of Parsi theatre. In February 1987, he passed away at the age of 72. He received the fourth-highest civilian accolade bestowed by the Indian government, the Padma Shri, in 1964. He also received the Sangeet Natak Akademi award in 1970.

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