Folk songs and dance performances enthralled visitors mostly from the twin cities on the third-day of the folk festival or Lok Mela ongoing at Lok Virsa.
A number of musicians, singers and dancers from various parts of the country, performed in front of a keen audience on Sunday.
Folk dancers such as ‘Gata Ghora’ group from Multan, Caravan troupe from Gilgit-Baltistan, Dharees dancers from Jhang, Ustad Rehmatuddin, Iqbal Nabi and Aftab Alam from Chitral and Faizi dance ensemble from Kailash Valley, performed at the festival.
Artists such as Fazal Jatt from the Punjab Folk Theatre, Shahid Ali Khan from Peshawar, and Akhtar Channal, Jangi Khan, Sachu Khan and Khadim Hussain from Balochistan entertained audience, mostly women and children with spectacular performances.
Others who performed at the festival included Bashir Lohar from Chiniot, Sain Hussain (Missan Kalar), Bushra Sadiq (Lahore), Krishan Lal Bhel and Guliya Ram Ranti group from Rahim Yar Khan, Mai Zeenat, Gampat Bheel and Wadhu Bheel from Umerkot, Sindh, Shaukat Ali and Zaman Ali from Hafizabad, Anees Ahmad, Amanat Ali, Azam Jogi and Akhtar Ali from Rawalpindi, Wahid Bakhsh from Sadiqabad, and Ali Imran and Bano Rehmat from Muzaffarabad, Kashmir.
Folk music and traditional dance performances are popular throughout the country and is a common site especially on occasions such as birth of a child, weddings, and to celebrate festivals and arrival of seasons.
Traditional folk dances are simple and rhythmic. Each dance traditionally has its own costume, which is ornamented.
The 10-day festival features artisans and folk artists from across the country. It will continue till April 12.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 6th, 2015.