Traditionally, base camps have been hubs for mountaineers to interact, exchange stories and experiences, sing songs and devour food over a bonfire. They serve as a sanctuary to unplug from the humdrum of everyday life and reconnect with nature.
Recreating that aura in an urban setting, the Serena Hotel launched Base Camp – a cultural platform for music, literature and art – on Friday evening at Rakaposhi, one of its restaurants.
The aroma of freshly-grilled barbeque wafted in the cool autumn breeze, as some guests enjoyed coffee, food and fresh juices at the outdoor cafe.
An upcoming indie duo, Maria and Danish performed a live playlist with their guitars and keyboard in tow. The siblings opened with Arooj Aftab’s “Bolo Na” and progressed into an eclectic mix of tunes. Their mashup of “I’m Yours” and “Bibi Shireen” was soulful and mellow, adding to the casual and laidback weekend feel. They also whipped up rhythms by other wildly popular musicians like Adele and Eric Clapton.
Danish was a finalist in the Pakistan Sangeet Icon and Maria has recently been featured with pop-rock band Noori for a beverage’s music video. Together, they were placed second in the Serena Hotels Annual Music Competition 2013 and have since then been the SerenArts Ambassadors 2013.
“They are fantastic. It’s like they are really paying homage to the people whose songs they’re singing,” said Alexis, an audience member, who was relaxing at the café with her friends.
Muznah Umar of Serena Hotel said the idea was to provide a platform to nurture young talent and to have a place where people could enjoy diverse cultural performances while unwinding after work on a weekend. She added that the base camp, which has been scheduled to take place on alternate weekends, will feature blogger talks, literary readings and poetry recitals in future.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 13th, 2013.