Saira Peter, Sain Khawar to perform on Friday in Islamabad Club

ISLAMABAD, Mar 12 (APP):Pakistan’s first Sufi Opera singer Saira Peter and famous folk singer Sain Khawar would perform at Islamabad Club on Friday.
The event was being organized by Hunerkada for the first time along with fusion of eastern and western music.

Born in Karachi, Saira Peter has lived in London for the last 19 years. She trained as an operatic singer under Paul Knight, who was a student of English composer Benjamin Britten, a legend in Western classical music.

In an interview with APP, she told that these days she was working on a Sufi Opera, a famous story of Sindh province on Umar Marvi and it would be in English language as she was planning to stage it in London.

Se said an English writers committee had nominated her father Zafar Francis as a main writer of this opera. He would write 35 songs for it. “I am proud to be trained by Paul Knight and consider him as my master,” she opined.

The unique genre of Sufi Opera she performs is a true labour of love, bringing together her training in the western classical tradition of music and her love for Sufi poetry.

“Sufism is an important part of the Pakistani culture. Sufi poets such as Bulleh Shah and Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai have woven beautiful messages of peace and love in their poetry and I wanted to introduce this custom in the western society in its own style of music and language,” she said.

Saira is also the director of the Noor Jahan Centre in London, which has promoted Pakistani music and culture there since 1998.

“I have composed, sung, produced and released a new Album on the Persian poetry of renowned Urdu and Persian poet of Pakistan, late Sufi Ghulam Mustafa Tabasum,” she added.

Saira Peter informed that she had also opened a music academy for women in Karachi to train them in Sufi Opera singing.

She expressed her desire to establish a music academy for female singers in Gilgit-Baltistan.

She said it was heartening to note that many girls were entering in this field in the country. She said she was the first Opera singer of Pakistan and the only Sufi opera singer in the world.