Online Desk : Veteran actor Aly Zaker, country`s eminent thespian, director and chairman of Asiatic 3sixty, has died in hospital care after a four-year battle with cancer. He was 76.
He breathed his last at United Hospital in the capital at 6:40 am Friday while undergoing treatment for COVID-19.
Aly was admitted to Bangladesh Specialised Hospital on November 15 as he fell ill.
Bdnews24.com adds: for his contribution to Bangladesh theatre, he was awarded with the state award of Ekushey Padak in 1999.
Aly was the president of Nagorik Natya Sampradaya and directed and acted in several plays for Nagorik. He adapted plays by Moliere, Brecht, Zuckmayer, Chekov, Albee and Shakespeare.
Aly, a popular director and actor, was a part of over 2,000 plays. This includes lead roles in Shakespeare`s Macbeth and Tempest and Dewan Gazir Kissa. He was also a part of Man Matti, Syed Shamsul Haque`s Nurul Diner Shara Jibon, Khatta Tamasha, Bidogdho Romonikul (based on Molière`s Les Femmes Savantes), Nishiddho Pollite (based on Edward Albee`s Everything in the Garden). He also played the leading role in a Bangla adaptation of Bertolt Brecht`s 1943 play The Life of Galileo.
He acted in over 300 television plays and serials, including Ghorshowarer Shopno, Pathor Deyal, Baki Itihash, Oboshor, Tothapi, Aj Robibar and Bohubrihi.
Aly studied sociology at Dhaka University. He started his career in Karachi in 1966 with WS Crawfords Ltd, a UK-based advertising agency. Aly joined East Asiatic Advertising Ltd in 1968 and pioneered the concept of modern advertising and consumer research in the then East Pakistan.
Aly was the group chairman of Asiatic 3Sixty, a communication group in Bangladesh that started with a single company employing just eight people in independent Bangladesh in February 1972, according to his website.
Aly left behind wife Sara Zaker, a media personality, entrepreneur and social activist, and their children Iresh Zaker and Sriya Sharbojoya.
President M Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina expressed profound shock and sorrow at the death of Ekushey the award-winning cultural personality.
The President, in a condolence message, said, “Thespian Aly Zaker was a shining star in country`s cultural arena . . . The country lost an eminent actor and cultural figure at his death.”
“His (Zaker) death is an irreparable loss to the cultural arena of the country,” Abdul Hamid added.
In a separate condolence message, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said that the contribution of Aly Zaker in the great Liberation War, the country`s arts and cultural arena will be remembered forever.
Sheikh Hasina prayed for the departed soul and expressed sympathy to the bereaved family.