Sufi and folk music festival in Jammu

Jammu: A classical, sufi and folk music festival with a special focus on creating cultural awareness and new avenues for the youth in fields of arts and music, is set to begin here from Saturday.

The 7th annual "Samapa Aalap" festival being presented by Samapa in collaboration with Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board (SMVDSB) will be held for 17 days from January 28 to February 13 with more than 30 presentations at over 20 different venues here.

"The festival is projected to be witnessed by more than 35000 students and music connoisseurs," santoor maesro and music composer Abhay Rustum Sopori who is also Secretary Samapa told reporters here today.

Concieved by Sopori the event, which began in the 2006 for one week has over the years grown into a prestigious music festial of not only the state but also the country, he said.

Concerts would be also be held in border areas like Khour, R S Pura, Rajouri and Poonch, with a special concert at the Central Jail in Jammu.

"The festival acts like a musical balm creating cultural awareness and new avenues for younger generation to come forward in fields like arts and music," said Sopori.

Samapa, an academy of music formed under the aegis of its Chairman, santoor legend and composer, Pt Bhajan Sopori, under motto `Music to the masses" (jan jan tak sangeet) represents heartbeat of J&K people and its culture," said Sopori.

The festival editon would feature concerts by Pt Bhajan Sopori, Abhay Rustum Sopori (Santoor), Pt Kartick Kumar, Mohsin Ali Khan, Mehtab Ali (Sitar), Asghar Hussain (Violin), Ragini Rainu (Sufi) and Nitin Sharma (Vocal) amongst others.

There would be special interactive sessions by various eminent musicologists and music critics of the country like Pt Vijay Shankar Mishra and Pandit Ravindra Misra.

The festival would also include presentations by various folk musicians of J&K.