Qawwali evening at Pakistan’s France embassy mesmerises audience

Qawwali evening at Pakistan's France embassy mesmerises audience

ISLAMABAD, Jan 26 (APP): The Embassy of Pakistan in Paris arranged a Qawwali evening where guests were treated to a captivating performance of soulful Sufi poetry by renowned Pakistani Qawwal Bakhtyar Ali Santoo and his team.

Ambassador Asim Iftikhar Ahmad, in his welcome address, highlighted that Qawwali had been in practice since the 13th century and the credit for popularizing it rested mostly with Hazrat Amir Khusrau, according to a Pakistan embassy’s press release received Friday.

He noted that there was a time when Qawwali was sung only at shrines of Sufi saints but now this form of music was appreciated widely including formal and informal occasions, movies and other events.

Giving an insight into how the transformation of Qawwali took shape from a ritual function to one of entertainment; from a traditional community event to an international commercial one – the ambassador credited it to a generation of famous Qawwals from Sabri brothers to Aziz Mian and most prominently the supremo Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan.

Pakistan has a diverse musical landscape. Qawwali is extremely popular throughout the country because of its soul-touching lyrics and rhythmic melodies, added the Ambassador.

Elaborating further, he said that when Qawwali was performed in a concert for international audiences who did not understand the lyrics, the driving rhythms became the focus of attention.

Bakhtyar Ali Santoo Qawwal from Lahore, Pakistan who enthralled and mesmerized the Parisian audience is among the leading Qawwals of the new generation and is known for his powerful performances.

From his early childhood, he had a strong inclination, passion and interest in Qawwali as it gives a message of love, peace, respect and reverence.

A large number of people including French officials and friends, diplomats, music lovers and media enjoyed the Qawwali.

The delicious traditional Pakistani cuisine was served to the guests which made the evening even more enjoyable.

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