KARACHI: Music lovers were treated to some delightful performances on the inaugural day of the two-day sitar festival organised by Tahzeeb Foundation at the Arts Council Karachi on Thursday.

The event was presided over by writer Mushtaq Ahmed Yousufi while Pir Aftab Shah was the chief guest.

The evening began with young sitar player Shahroz Khan`s wonderful performance. The 14-year-old Shahroz is the son of known sitar player Sajjad Husain from whom he`s learnt his art. His rendition of raag huns dhun was a treat to lend ears to. The young man has the verve to make it big in the music industry. He was able to make his sitar poeticise the melody of the raag, particularly with the tender notes he earned himself a great many fans.

Next up was another young sitar player from Lahore, Rakae Jamil.

He first played the tune of famous Faiz Ahmed Faiz ghazal Hum ke thehre ajnabi and followed it up with the nazm Bahar aaee . His last performance was a thumri in raag bahar. Listening to Rakae Jamil gave the impression as if the young man was burdened with too much in one go, and if he had been asked to do not more than a couple of items, he`d have fared better. Despite having talent, his effort yielded a predictable response from the audience.

Then came folk singers Javed Niazi and Babar Niazi. Their act lifted the mood as well as the tempo of the programme. The brothers started off with Aaj pia morey angna mein aey . Javed Niaz used the murkian and taan in the most appropriate manner, embellishing the song the way it merited.

Babar Niazi too sang well.

Their next act was a Punjabi number, Kavan ne kavan , composed by the two brothers. They dedicated the song to their late father, Tufail Niazi.

Again Javed Niazi crooned out the number with great feeling and created an atmosphere that befitted the melody of the composition. They rounded off their stint with another Punjabi number Main naeen janan , which was also received well.

This was followed by the Tahzeeb awards ceremony in five categories. The award recipients were Ustad Rais Khan (classical music), Javed and Babar Niazi (folk music), Asad Mohammad Khan (Urdu fiction), Zehra Nigah (Urdu poetry) and Salima Hashmi (fine arts). The first two awards were given away by Pir Aftab Shah and the rest by Mushtaq Yousufi.

Source: Dawn.com

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