Tag Archives: Music

Dus Sharabiya: ‘The Song Of Lahore’

 

Artist: Faisal Rana ft. Deep Singh
Song: Dus Sharabiya

Dus Sharabiya is international collaboration between Pakistani artist Faisal Rana and Indian artist Deep Singh. Dus Sharabiya is about Lahore, even we would call Dus Sharabiya, ‘The Song Of Lahore’

Download from here

8th International Mystic Music Sufi Festival (22-25 April)

Sufi Music and Expression of Devotion from the Muslim World is one among a rare festival initiated in Pakistan by Rafi Peer Theatre Workshop. For programme check here

This festival celebrates the tradition of devotional expression through the performing arts in Muslim and other faith communities. In the past artists from Europe, the Middle East and South Asia-these are among the regions from which the performers in previous  festival have hailed. Whether from rural or urban areas, farmlands or great cities, mountains or valleys, they share a common yearning for union with the One.

The commencement of International Mystic Sufi Festival 2010 has a particular relevance.  Especially in these times with so many misconceptions have created a wide gap between the moderates and the conservatives’ minds. Continue reading

Lahore- video

posted by Raza Rumi

Fawzia Afzal Khan’s video – mysterious, flippant, fun and soulful

Enjoy

TALIBAN THREATS ASIDE, THE SHOW GOES ON IN LAHORE

Despite the threats from Taliban, the show goes on in Lahore. Click on the link below to watch an interesting report about threats and difficulties faced by artists and theater workshops. Must watch:  http://vjmovement.com/truth/542

Welcome to the guitar school

Courtesy: Daily Times

By Afnan Khan

LAHORE: At a time when fear and insecurity have put an end to most cultural activities, one art form, speaking the universal language of notes and harmonies, is still very much alive and kicking. One of the places still keeping musical traditions alive while promoting more contemporary forms, is The Guitar School. The brainchild of seasoned guitarist Hamza Jafri, the school, located in the Defence Housing Authority (DHA), has already had 55 students since it opened its door in June this year.

Ravail Sattar, one of the teachers at the school, believes in the undying power of music. “It is like a flowing stream that is unstoppable. You cannot hold it back forever, it will break through,” he says. He insists that neither extremists’ threats nor criticism from the government could deter artists from their calling. Many artists have recently been criticised for including anti-US rhetoric in their lyrics. Continue reading

A singing Romanian gypsy falls in love with Lahore

European artist fears terrorism will shatter her dreams

* Jina Rubik says Pakistan cultural heart of subcontinent, suffering because of insecurity

By Afnan Khan

LAHORE: A European artist has found herself trapped between her passion to learn and promote music and performing arts of the subcontinent, and the current downfall of arts and culture due to terrorism in Pakistan. Continue reading

A tale of two cities

By Sonya Rehman & Khaver Siddiqi 

‘It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…’ Charles Dickens’ literary masterpiece, A Tale of Two Cities, begins with these words. Though the novel has a theme of self-sacrifice and resurrection, the starting line of the novel can be applied here in Pakistan to two of its largest and most prominent cities — namely Karachi and Lahore.

 Indeed both cities have seen the best and the worst of times as far as the music industry’s concerned. But how do these cities relate to one another? How does their music combine and form the modern music scene as we know it?

 The music that originates from the Punjab is as intricate as its historic architecture. Lahore, the ‘garden of the Mughals’, has seen a myriad of melodies, genres, and vocals alongside a variety of musical instruments (both new and old) over the past few decades. Continue reading

Sufi ‘Mystic Music’ festival to be held from 30th

LAHORE: Rafi Peer Theatre Workshop on Tuesday announced holding its annual Mystic Music Sufi Festival 2009 from April 30 to May 2.

Talking to reporters, the Peerzada brothers said this was the 6th annual Sufi Festival organised by Rafi Peer Theatre Workshop. The festival brings with it a rich variety of Sufi music from across the country. Performers from all four provinces will take part in the festival and over 300 artists will perform. “Through the Sufi Festival, we look forward to highlighting the cultural and traditional warmth and wisdom of Sufi poetry,” said Faizan Peerzada. “We are hopeful that such festivals will bless all of us with tolerance, wisdom and a light leading to a new direction,” he added. Continue reading

Is Pakistan collapsing? A father and a citizen speaks

By Ali Dayan Hasan

At my daughter’s annual school parent’s day event in Lahore last month, the tension was palpable. Bewildered at the speed with which this innocuous annual event had transformed into a maximum security operation, anxious parents filed in their hundreds past security guards, metal detectors and bag searches into Theatre Number Two of the Alhamra Cultural Complex – a modernist structure that the citizens of Lahore would tell you proudly is amongst the largest public-funded exhibition and theatre complexes in Asia. They were there to see their children, none older than seven, perform the usual amalgam of tableaux on “Peoples and Festivals of the World”, a smattering of Kathak – a North Indian classical dance, a “Chinese dance” performance and, of course, my daughter’s favorite – a Disney-esque version of the Bangles hit – “Walk Like an Egyptian.” The event began, as always, with recitation from the Quran. Tense primary school teachers grappled with security issues and as I walked in; a very public stand-off between a security posse comprising teachers, local police and plain clothes personnel and a random man who was on the premises for “no known reason” was underway. The man was eventually deemed harmless and let go but there was no parent who entered that hall without making note of the exits. Two hours later, as we filed out, I and virtually every relieved parent thought and said the same thing: “One more year like the last one and next year there will be no Parents Day. Another month or two like the previous ones and there might be no school left open.”

Since December 27, 2007 – the dreadful winter’s day when streets across Pakistan fell silent in the aftermath of the assassination of Benazir Bhutto, Pakistanis have understood and expressed in varying degrees, or disagreed in desperate denial, that the Islamization project unleashed by the United States and implemented by the Pakistani military since 1979 had turned on its creators, snarling at the United States, devouring Pakistan and exposing its army for the megalomaniac but intensely incompetent institution that it is. And the narrative of impending disaster, brutal dispossession and disembodied lives in exile for stateless citizens harking back pathetically to a lost life, hitherto the preserve of Palestinians and Cubans, Afghans, Somalis and the ethnic mosaic of the Balkans, beckons to Pakistanis as well. One could argue that Pakistanis are scared of a future comprising daily doses of floggings, beheadings, daisy cutters and drones. They might be too. But no one has had time to think that far ahead. The truth is more prosaic: After all, if your children cannot go to school, the future has ceased to be. And when societies cannot have a future, they die. Continue reading

Faiz Ghar activities

Schedule for Faiz Ghar activities.

April /May/June 2009.

Urdu Baithak/Sing along sessions

‘Story hour’ for children 5 years and above.

Time: Every Sunday from 5.00 to 6.00 pm

Storytellers: conducted alternatively by Mr. Shoaib Hashmi, Dr. Arfa Syeda, Mr. Naveed Riaz, Mrs. Salima Hashmi, Mrs. Moneeza Hashmi and others

This will be followed by a sing along session with Ms. Zara David on keyboard.

Fees: No registration or fees. Come one, come all. Continue reading

Reclaiming melody – Sachal Studios of Lahore

Labourers of love: Mushtaq Soofi, Izzat Majeed & Christoph Bracher

Mian Yusaf Salahuddin’s Haveli, where Tarang was launched

Revival of the orchestra by Sachal Studios is a landmark in Pakistan’s music industry

Izzat Majeed: patron of music

Singers and musicians showcasing their skills at Sachal Studios

Raza Rumi (writing for The Friday Times)

It was a mellow, moonlit evening of Lahore’s glorious spring when Sachal Studios released their album ‘Tarang’. It could not have been at a more fitting venue. Amid the decaying environs of Old Lahore stands the Haveli of Mian Yusaf Salahuddin, refurbished into a little planet of conservation as a courageous effort to protect and rejuvenate Lahore’s cultural soul. Mian Yusuf is the one denizen who has done this good deed for posterity, along with Syed Babar Ali who has conserved his ancestral Mubarak Begum Haveli in Bhaati Gate. Of course, the state has been abject in its failure to conserve Lahore’s majestic heritage.Sachal Studios is the brainchild of international businessman Izzat Majeed and man of letters Mushtaq Soofi, an exceptionally motivated duo. Sachal has infused the local music scene with innovation and energy. It is promoting a hybrid orchestra – once an integral part of the subcontinent’s film music tradition. Since 2003, Majeed, an activist and radical intellectual in a previous avatar, has devoted his time and money to this passion – to create Pakistani melodies in sync with the imperatives of contemporary musical sensibilities.

Started as a labour of love, Sachal Studios has released ‘Tarang,’ a collection of music that brings together the best musicians from all over Pakistan, and Humaira Channa’s competent voice. Of late, Channa has been a victim of commercial success and the quality compromises that define Pakistan’s derelict film music. Sachal’s production is a relief; a fresh departure from the usual, and the melodic results are impressive.

At the Old Lahore Haveli, Channa with her family and associates were accorded the respect they deserve. In a similar vein, immensely talented artists, such as the tabla maestro Billoo Khan and Pakistan’s leading sitar player, Ustad Nafees Ahmed Khan also attracted the attention of the star-studded guest list and Lahore’s usual chatterati. It was on a dimly lit terrace of the Haveli that I was introduced to Izzat Majeed, who looked pleased with himself and his Sachal partners as notes from the latest album mixed with the spring air.

Inspired by the Abbey Road Studios in London, Majeed and Soofi have been working for the last six years with Christoph Bracher, a scion of a German musicians’ family, to design and set up Sachal Studios. A state of the art music studio in Lahore is a landmark, for it heralds a new trend of post-production finesse Continue reading

Great music lives on in Lahore

by Raza Rumi

This is the magic of Lahore and its deep-rooted cultural mores. No other city can boast of such individuals, movements and trends. Hopefully, the music will live on. The interest of younger generations and their experiments with various forms of music hold great promise

Last week the breezy environs of the majestic Lawrence Gardens once again swayed to the tunes of Hindustani classical music. A week long music festival organised by the All Pakistan Music Conference attracted musicians, vocalists and enthusiasts from all parts the country, as well as from the imagined “enemy” India. How could it not be the case when musical traditions emerged out of a cultural synthesis of 700 years or more?

The leading light of APMC was Hayat Ahmad Khan, whose sad demise in 2005 was interpreted as an end to the glorious tradition of subcontinental streams of music in Pakistan. However, 83 years of hard work and philanthropic contributions was not in vain. He left behind a powerful institution and a network of committed individuals and aesthetes who have kept the torch ablaze. Not a small feat in the troubled waters of a Pakistani cultural landscape constantly under attack by nation-state ideology and extremism that consider music to be too “Indian” or, even worse, un-Islamic.

This is the greatest irony of our existence: the Muslims in India contributed to what is known today as Indian classical music and innovations such as the sitar and the tabla. The Qawwal bache trained at the shrine of Nizamuddin Auliya in Delhi under the tutelage of Amir Khusrau became the founders of what was to later evolve as the sophisticated Khayal style of music. In dire times of the Sultanate and Mughal periods, these musicians had to take refuge in the princely states, and this is how the various gharanas, or schools of music, originated. This loose network of musicians organised along the lines of kinship or teacher-pupil bonds, sustained by court patronage and eclectic and secular in appeal, led to some fine moments. Tansen at Akbar’s court, Mohammad Shah Rangeela’s patronage and later the Kingdom of Oudh defined the high-points of this fused and seamless culture beyond religion, communal and sectarian divides.

To keep this tradition alive in post-independence Pakistan was a Herculean task. Pakistan was a moth-eaten and truncated country in the words of its founder Mohammad Ali Jinnah. The psychological trauma and barbarity of the Partition had jolted everyone and the traditional patronage of the state was missing. It was under these circumstances that on September 15 1959, music-inspired citizens met at the famous Coffee House of Lahore and launched a voluntary organization called The All Pakistan Music Conference. Eminent personas such as Roshan Ara Begum were among the illustrious list of its founders.

It should be noted that this was also the age when the maestro Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khan migrated to India and Roshan Ara Begum was almost about to give up the passion of her life. Thus Continue reading

Rhythm, dhol, base

LAHORE: A view of Government College University campus from the music room of Nazir Ahmad Music Society. The society has produced many renowned musicians and singers including the likes of Khawaja Khursheed Anwar, Jawad Ahmad and Shafqat Amanat Ali Khan.

The photo was taken by Abid Nawaz for the Daily Times.

International Mystical Music in Lahore

Artists from Afghanistan, Syria, Iran and Egypt performed on the final night of International Mystical Music Sufi Festival at Peeru’s Café on Sunday. The performances were not scheduled but were still conducted. The Dalahoo Sufi Ensemble, the Iranian group, stole the show with Jalaluddin Rumi’s poetry. It was the second from last group to perform at the event. Continue reading

Sufi music festival to hit the city on 25th

From the Daily Times

LAHORE: The 5th International Mystic Music Sufi Festival (IMMSF) will be held in the city from April 25 to 27.

Rafi Peer Theatre Workshop (RPTW) in collaboration with Telenor Pakistan launched the annual music festival at Peeru’s Café.

This time, the event is being taken to small cities. The festival began on April 21 at the National Institute of Folk and Traditional Heritage, Islamabad, and would move on to Multan on April 24. From April 25 to 27, the performances will be presented in Lahore. The festival will conclude on April 30 at the Beach View Garden, Karachi. Continue reading

All Pakistan Music Conference

From Lahore metroblogs

At the time of the history’s greatest migration, along with geographical disorientation, the infant Pakistan was also psychologically lost and depressed. These were dire times when simple survival as a seperate nation was the only priority and arts at such time could not be given much heed. This led to further gloom of the art lovers as well as artists themselves. Apart from radio Pakistan there was no more music in the air. Music lovers reminisced the live music concerts whereas maestros in the field of music started to crumble. At such a difficult time for music in Pakistan it was cocncerned citizens that collectively volunteered to initiate the All Pakistan Music Conference in 1959. Their main objective was to rejuvenate and relive the glory of classical music and arrange seminars, conferences and concerts. (courtesy: www.apmc.info)

Today, 49 years later the All Pakistan Music Conference maintains its poise and is held every year without fail reminding us of the art that breathes in the same ambience as we do. Classical music and dance is in the air of the subcontinent. We can choose to ignore it but not eradicate it.

The remaining APMC Festival 2008 has been postponed but the last of the few events was last month when Hajrah Khan, a Social Sciences Major from Lahore University of Management Sciences read an academic paper on “Urdu Ghazal & English Sonnet” very intricately interlacing the two and reminding us , art has no boundaries, geographical or demographic. The esteemed presence of Shaista Sirajuddin to read out the English Sonnets selected by Hajrah and Dr Arfa Syeda Zehra to recite Urdu Ghazals added to the magic.

English Sonnet and Urdu Ghazal

Continue reading