A mix of lyrics and steps

Soulful evening

A mix of lyrics and steps

Bangalore’s classical music lovers got together recently at the Indian Institute of World Culture to enjoy Sama-E-Khusro, an evening of sufi music. Sama-E-Khusro was an effort to celebrate poetry by Amir Khusro. While the City is generally cut off from sufi tradition, this event enthralled the audience.

The programme commenced with Kannada songs by B B Kulkarni, a popular artiste, which was followed by a sufi kathak recital by dancer Anurekha Ghosh.

“Sufi thought and emotion liberate the spirit and the soul. When that gets connected to the cosmos and when one gets lost in that, there is a connection,” said Anurekha Ghosh.

Nityapriya Srivastava, a Hindustani classical vocalist performed Kafi style sufi kalam of Amir Khusro in pure Hindustani classical form. The programme concluded with Nityapriya Srivastava and Anurekha Ghosh performing a jugalbandi of sufi vocal and kathak recitals.

Some of the compositions that were rendered were Aaj Rang Hai Ri Ma Rangi Hai, Main To Piya Say Naina Lada Aayi Ray and Eri Sakshi More Piya Ghar Aaye.

“It was an invaluable experience. It was the first time that people in Bangalore witnessed such a jugalbandi. It was a chance to be away from worldly affairs. We look forward to our next performance, which is bharatanatyam and sufi jugalbandi in June,” said Nityapriya Srivastava, a Hindustani classical vocalist.  The instruments that were used included the tabla and harmonium. Meera G Shanbhogue and Kiran accompanied them on tabla, while Kalgurgi was on violin and Aparna G Shanbhogue on harmonium.

The mother-daughter duo, Meera Shanbhogue and Aparna Shanbhogue who perform regularly, said, “We have been performing regularly at temples. It is a really good experience,” said Meera adding that every evening both of them practise the bhajans. While Meera plays the tabla, Aparna plays the harmonium.

“The kathak sufi style of Kolkata is different from that of Jaipur. In Kolkata, artistes are influenced by  Manipuri style and Ravindra Nrithya. The songs were very lively but I found that they resembled Urdu shayari. I try and attend sufi concerts regularly,” said Satyanarayana, a music enthusiast and a dancer.

“It’s the first time that I am attending a sufi music concert. I’ve enjoyed the programme,” said Prabha, an audience member.

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