Khairpur’s folk festival seeks to embody culture beyond art

Sameer Sheikh News & Media December 18, 2019

Published in Samaa TV

Nothing unites people more than the understanding that we are divided. We’re a country in need of platforms where people can enjoy the pleasure of shared congregation and celebrate our differences.

And there is no better way to do it than through performance arts, which unite people by connecting them with their rich and diverse cultural heritage.

The Shah Abdul Latif University (SALU) Khairpur and Thespianz Foundation are organizing a four-day long cultural festival titled the Thespianz Folk Festival at SALU Khairpur. The event will start on September 19 and will be in time for International Day of Peace on September 21.

“The festival aims to promote peace and harmony,” Thespianz Foundation President Faisal Malik told the media on Tuesday. Referring to the recent tensions in Pakistan, he said there was an urgent need to organize an event that focuses on art and culture and brings like-minded people together in one place.

The festival will feature performances by prominent artists from across the country, including famous qawaals Jawed and Naved Ali – commonly known as the Sabri Brothers — and Rahim Yar Khan’s folk singer Wahid Allan Fakir.

The folk artists will stage different types of cultural performances, including a dhol performance, puppetry show, matka cultural dance, sufi pilgrim dance, Cholistani Thari dance and classical music performances with traditional instruments like nigara, chimta and shehnai.

The festival will also showcase performances by students of SALU and a vloggers session. Professional artists from Karachi will train the students ahead of their performances.

“The festival aims to encourage new talent and promote a softer image of the country,” SALU Khairpur Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Parveen Shah said. “This is the first time an event of this sort is happening in Sindh.”

It will be a free festival and open for all. The medium of language will be Urdu so that everyone can easily understand what’s being said, the organisers explained.

Dr Shah explained the importance of teaching cultural curriculum at institutional level and said it would help create an understanding among people about universal language of arts and culture.

Preparations for the Thespianz Folk Festival are under way.

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