LAHORE: The King of Ghazal, Mehdi Hasan was himself an institute of classical music. His ghazals are a great asset of the music industry. To honour the late legend, Lahore Arts Council (LAC), arranged a two-day festival at Al-Hamra Hall on March 26 and March 27.
The opening day of the event saw tributes by renowned singers accompanied by youngsters was also gave a mesmerising performance. Artists also shared their views about the talent and personality of Mehdi Hasan. According to them, he mastered ghazal singing as a profession for a long time. Ghazal enthusiasts from different walks of life also graced the occasion with their presence.
Ustad Ghulam Abbas sang his famous ghazals including, ‘Khuli jo aankh’, ‘Kehna ussey’ and ‘Andaze mastana’. According to him, our music industry could not fill the gap left by him. “The nation can’t forget the services of Mehdi Hasan and especially his songs for the love of his country will always be remembered.” The entire crowd lauded the performance of Saira Naseem who sang ‘Main hosh main tha’ and ‘Ab ke tajdeed ahde wafa ka nahi imkaan jana’.
“I am speechless and have no words to pay a tribute to him. The music industry is dying and there is a need to adopt the way of Mehdi Hasan and organise more events,” she said.Nida Faiz and Asif Javed also enthralled the audience with their performances on the first day. The festival concluded by featuring artists, Ustad Rauf Khan, Saima Jahan, Sara Raza Khan, Ejaz Qaiser, Nayab Hamid Ali khan and Inam Hamid Ali Khan. Sara Raza Khan paid tribute to Mehdi Hasan with his beautiful ghazal ‘Baat karni mujhe mushkil kabhi aisi to na thi’ and was appreciated by the audience.
LAC executive director Atta Muhammad thanked everyone for their participation. He said, “It is our mission and agenda to revive the music and we have started a practice of paying tribute to the legends of the music industry. In the coming days more programmes regarding music and cultural activities are planned, as we are committed to provide entertainment to music lovers.”
Published in The Express Tribune, March 29th, 2015.