Mystic music brings spiritualism to Islamabad

ISLAMABAD, March 17: Spiritualism comes in many forms. On Sunday night it came in the mystic music of the tradition bearers from Aghanistan, Chitral, Hunza and Peshawar. online15The compositions including instrumentals dealt with those universal themes of love and life in the mountains of Pakistan that the audiences could relate to. Weathered and intimate vocals were juxtaposed against sparse, shimmering arrangements from traditional instruments to create sounds that touched the souls. Arranged by the Embassy of France in Islamabad, Pakistan National Council of Arts and the Agha Khan Cultural Service, the two hours long concert was music to listen to, be amazed by, and to dream upon. Dedicated to the mystic mountain music, Ustad Ali Gohar and his team of drummers opened the act. Four different performances and epic tunes reflected the people’s interactions with nature, high mountains and their beliefs. This was followed by another 20 minutes performance of soft folk songs on rubab, acoustic guitar and small drums. DW Baig from Shimshal and Fazalur Rehman from Gojal, Hunza sang songs that were stitched with emotions that served to create bodies of works that seemed pure and flowed from the deepest darkest chamber of the heart. But first rate instrumental artistry came from Ustad Ghulam Hussain on the rubab accompanied by Ustad Faqeer Hussain on tabla who presented traditions of Afghanistan. Solid and liquid notes from the rubab floated in the National Art Gallery auditorium when Ustad Ghulam Hussain held everything together with a few poignant plucks, vigorous strumming and the occasional astonishingly florid solo playing. After a lapse of several minutes Ustad Faqeer Hussain poured his talent, sprinkling beautiful rhythmic sounds from the tabla. The two musicians struck perfect balance of rubab and tabla, and the beauty of the performance was the space they gave each other. The paring did not just bring the two musicians new fans as they brought a sense of musicality to their compositions. mansurThey were joined by the musical talent Zarsanga winner of Pride of Performance. What she lacked in glamour, she more than made it up for when she performed gentle and soft renditions. “There were moments of real beauty in her singing,” said Farzana Agha in the audience and a fan of folk music. For 20 minutes Zarsanga collaborated with Ustad Ghulam Hussain and Ustad Faqeer Hussain with only a few hours of practice together earlier in the day and results were the glorious sounds. And then came on stage Mansur Shabab and Aftab Alam and their team to present the mystic Khowar music and poetry from Chitral. The 30 minutes filled with otherworldly music flew by. Figuring from responses in the audience, one performance out did the other especially the last 20 minutes of singing byMehr Angaiz, Amber and Gulbaz Khan who sang mystic Sufi poetry in Persian, Brurushaski and Urdu that were fresh and engaging. The trio was especially put together by the organizers for their amazing ability to deliver stories through songs with twists and emotions that were so human, making their music instantly relatable.–Dawn]]>

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