Rare performance: G-B expatriates dance in UAE

In a first-of-its-kind event, a G-B musical night was held in Dubai


Shabbir Mir March 03, 2017
Youth dance to the tune of G-B music. PHOTO: EXPRESS

GILGIT: Living hundreds of miles away, Gilgit-Baltistan natives living in the United Arab Emirates got a chance to revive memories of their hometown as they danced to the tunes sung by folk singers from the region this week.

In a first-of-its-kind event, a G-B musical night was held in Dubai recently, where many people from G-B live and work.

According to the organisers, around 1,000 people turned up for the event in an auditorium which only had a capacity for 300 seats.

“It was a rare show in which people showed unprecedented enthusiasm,” said Kaleem Iqbal who attended the event.

“The auditorium was overflowing and several men had to stand,” Iqbal told The Express Tribune.

Organised on a self-help basis by music lovers from G-B, the main attraction was renowned Balti folk singer Jabir khan Jabir. He was joined by performers such as Shahid Akhtar Qalandar, Rashid Iqbal Rashid, Raja Babar, Naveed Tanha and Imtiyaz Sheki.

They sang a number of classic folk songs different languages spoken in G-B including Shina, Burushaski, Balti, Khuwar and the dying language Wakhi. “Mas soonchu raam to tut beh mai Giltet gah khush waine (honestly speaking I love Gilgit because of you),” were among the popular folk songs which were sung.

“It had been our dream to perform outside the country and the occasion was made even more memorable by the enthusiasm shown by the audience,” Rashid said after the event.

Some lawmakers from G-B including Minister for Works Dr Iqbal, GBLA Deputy Speaker Jafarullah, Advisor to CM Abid Ali Baig also attended the show along with the Pakistan Ambassador to UAE.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 3rd, 2017.

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