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Decade of Sufism

City to host Sufi festival Ruhaniyat, as it celebrates its 10th anniversary.

music Updated: Nov 19, 2010 15:52 IST
Nikhil Hemrajani

Right at the heels of NCPA’s Sama’a, yet another two-day mystic Sufi music festival has been lined up. Celebrating its 10th year anniversary, Ruhaniyat, organised by Banyan Tree Events, is one of the most prestigious Sufi event that’s held in several Indian cities from the third week of November till March. This year, it will travel to Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Pune. Ardent followers in Mumbai can attend the festival on November 20 and 21 at Horniman Circle Gardens, Fort, at 6.30 pm.

“We’re honoured to have Salabat Mahato perform this year,” says Nandini Mahesh, director of Banyan Tree Events. Mahato, a renowned Jhumur singer, is possibly the only living master of the tradition in the world.

“Metaphorically, we’re sleep-walking throughout our lives. Jhumur wakes us up from slumber and brings us closer to divinity,” says Mahesh.

Other performances in the first day include mystic chants by Buddhist Monks and Tannoura whirling dervishes from Egypt. As the Tannoura (meaning heavy skirt) dervishes start whirling, their skirts start billowing to reveal multiple layers. This metaphorically, implies the unveiling of ignorance. On the first day there will be qawwalis performed by Timmu Gulfam, and one by Ade Suparman with Yusdiana – a group from Indonesia. Day two will offer performances by Parvathy Baul, Arabic Sufi songs by Yasir Bakr, Mohammad Farghaly and Group (Egypt) and Jikr-Jari by Hafiza Begum Chaudhury and group.