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Dancing to her own tunes

art and culture Updated: Mar 24, 2011 13:44 IST
Nirmika Singh
Nirmika Singh
Hindustan Times
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Singer Fauzia Maria Beg has transcended boundaries, not just between the vocal music styles of India and Europe, but even those that separate music and dance.

A Mumbai-born Latin-jazz singer and kathak exponent who relocated to Germany in the late ’80s, Beg is popular there for bringing the two art forms to the stage, seamlessly combining them to offer Western audiences a piece of both the East and West.

Now, as she returns to the city, she brings with her the various Latin styles popular in the West. “I love rhythms of all kinds and draw inspiration from artistes like samba-reggae singer Daniela Mercury and Tania Maria, who is a great Brazilian pianist,” says Beg, adding that she will be performing covers from classic Latin-jazz to the post-bossanova contemporary genre of music, popular brasiliera along with one original song at her concert at Blue Frog tonight.

Having performed with musicians with varied backgrounds world-over, Beg maintains that her versatility is her USP. “With so much creativity inside me, I can’t say that I’m just a jazz singer and limit myself to it since I regularly perform soul and retro-pop too.” But Latin-jazz being her forte, she will be seen collaborating with local artistes like drummer Adrian D’Souza, guitarist Sanjay Divecha and keyboardist/saxophonist Tala Faral, as she showcases her percussive scatting abilities while singing salsa and samba tunes in Portuguese and Spanish. And if she feels like it, she might just break into a classical Indian tune when you expect it the least.

Ask her about her music-dance collaborative set-up and she says, “While in Germany, I wanted a touch of Indian culture in my performances.

I had learnt kathak as a child and decided that I could incorporate it with Portuguese and Latin rhythms to put together a unique set-up.” Beg was also a regular at the city’s Oberoi Sheraton hotel back in the ’80s.

Fauzia Maria Beg will perform 10 pm tonight at Blue Frog. Entry is free before 9 pm and R 300 after that.