Drumbeats from Lahore with Love



Drummers perform during the 5th Amritsar-Lahore Saanjh Festival in Amritsa
Drummers perform during the 5th Amritsar-Lahore Saanjh Festival in Amritsar .
Photo by Vishal Kumar

The drum beats of Lahore-based Panjpāni group featuring 22 dholis (drummers) of international fame, headed by Pappu Saaen, wove a magic with its rhythmic sounds and left the audience spellbound at the 5th Amritsar-Lahore Saanjh Festival-2008 held here last evening in Amritsar .

Lahori artistes took the centre stage with Ustad Hamid Ali Khan of Patiala gharana and Saaen Zahoor casting a spell with their classical and folk singing. Attired in black and golden robes, Zahoor, who has a unique style of singing the traditional poetry accompanied with an iktara, started his kalaam with Allah Hoo, a typical earthy style, which captivated the big audience. Zahoor, who had won 2006 BBC world music award, has travelled abroad and enthralled world audiences.

Saeen Zahoor

Giving the message of love, peace and harmony, Zahoor said he always prayed for warm relations between the two countries, which had embittered the past and the artistes were trying to apply balm to the hurt psyche with a common thread of culture and tradition.

Ustad Hamid Ali, son of famous classical singer Ustad Akbar Hussain Khan, also fascinated the audience with his singing. The classical singing of Hamid won hearts of the crowd in the Spring Dale Senior School complex.

The performance of Junoon Kuchh Kar Dikhane Ka-fame Akbar Ali, young folk singer Ashraf Ali with famous Punjabi singer Lakhwinder Wadāli, was applauded by the audience.

Earlier, the festival organised by Punar-jot in association with the Rafi Peer Theatre Workshop, Lahore , was inaugurated by information and public relations minister Sardar Bikram Singh Majithia by lighting the lamp. 

The co-founder and spirit behind the Saanjh festival, Usmān Peerzada, a noted Pakistani TV star and theatre artiste, speaking on the occasion said the artistes of both countries should enhance the canvass of this festival to encompass people of Pakistan and India and project it as an Indo-Pak festival.

Faizān Peezada of the Rafi Peer Group said Saanjh made a humble beginning six years ago with a handful of artistes performing in front of a small group, today he was pleased to see a large group had turned out to enjoy the evening bringing in cultural renaissance of both countries. 

[Courtesy: The Tribune October 20 2008