It’s that night of the year when the city comes to a freeze. The stars go blue, the weather charming, and the mood effervescent. Musical bliss is all that chimes in one’s ears.
The last day of Sufi fiesta Jahan-e-Khusrau, held at Humayun’s Tomb, was laden with fine performances. The evening began on a rhythmic note with Arab ki Sarai, a ballet based on the works of Sufi saint Bulleh Shah, featuring Kathak dancer Astad Deboo. With Manipuri drummers on one side and vocalist Malini Awasthi on the other, the stage looked like a mélange of myriad Sufi influences. Awasthi’s alaap complemented Deboo’s ethereal mudra,
and we saw the audience swaying in synchrony.
The spectators lauded the act and then gave in to the magic of Sufi legend Abida Parveen’s riveting voice. The Pakistani singer serenaded all with one musical gem after the other. Among greats she paid tribute to were poets Amir Khusrau and Faiz Ahmed Faiz. She performed anthems such as Allah Hoo and Aaj Rang Hai before signing off in style with the ever-so-enchanting Mast Kalandar.