Over 150 artistes and musicians from seven countries including Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Spain, the USA, Bahrain and Poland rocked the fourth edition of Dhaka International Folk Fest, which ended last Saturday at the Bangladesh Army Stadium in Banani.
They captivated the Dhaka audience, who thronged the stadium in thousands, with folk music of different parts of the world and made the festival a colourful and vibrant celebration.
Let’s have a look on some of the most enthralling performances at the festival.
Bhabna Nritya Dal
For the noted local dance troupe Bhabna Nritya Dal, it was surely an honour to open the festival with dance recitals. Fifty-three artistes of the troupe keeping the colour of the festival opened it with a few folk dance recitals synchronised with folk songs. The troupe’s presentation of martial dance, known as Raibenshe, was a dazzling recital.
Polish folk band Dikanda, performing for the first time in Bangladesh, captivated the audience with its acoustic music gig featuring a blend of European and Oriental folk tunes and traditions.
The band’s presentation of songs like Jinla ro, Appaosta jane na, Ya sare maane, Usti usti rada and others won the Dhaka audience.
Indian sufi troupe Wadali Brothers ended the opening night with its powerful performance presenting sufi songs composed by renowned sufi poets like Bulleh Shah, Amir Khasru, Farid Shah and others.
The Punjab-based Wadali Brothers, comprised of Ustad Puranchand Wadali and his son Lakhwinder Wadali, mesmerised with numbers like Tere naam, Mein to priya se and Dama dam mast qalandar, songs that preach love for God and his creations.
The Raghu Dixit Project
Indian singer Raghu Dixit and his band The Raghu Dixit Project got audience tap their legs with the sunny vibes of its music, combining folk and rock, through songs like Mysore se aayi and others.
Grammy-winning American band Los Texmaniacs was a major attraction of the second night. The troupe soaked the audience with its Texan songs like Beautiful women, Down in the bario, Honky tonk, Marina and
Local folk queen Momtaz ended the second night with her riveting performance rendering both mystic and popular songs. Beginning with mystic song Ami janmo niya dekhte pelam, the singer ended with her fast-tempo tracks like Pankha and Local Bus.
Arnob and friends
Local popular singer-composer Arnob, accompanied by Labik Kamal Gourab and others, hooked the audience with yesteryear song Amar shonar moyna pakhi and Lalon songs like Ke bojhe mawlar alekbaji, Gyan hoilo noirashi and others.
Shafqat Amanat Ali
Popular Pakistani singer Shafqat Amanat Ali, known for his versatility in combining classical, rock and folk music, ended the fourth edition of Dhaka International Folk Fest in style.
Shafqat, who comes from the famous Patiala Gharana, mesmerised the Dhaka audience rendering a wide array of songs ranging from Punjabi folk through sufi to Bollywood playbacks.
Shafqat began his spell singing sufi number Mawla tera noor and then went to present his self-composed romantic numbers Ankhon ki sagar and Khamaj.
A surprise gift from the singer was his cover of popular yesteryear Bangla song Keu konodin amare to kotha dilona.
Popular Bollywood playbacks including Bin tere, Yeh chand, Mora saiyan, Tere naina, Teri jhuki nazar, Yeh hosnla and Mitwa by the singer quenched the thirst of the audience.
Besides local bands like Swarobanja, Nakshikantha, singers like Abdul Hai Dewan, Baul Kabir Shah, Indian singer Satyaki Banerjee, Spanish band Las Migas and Bahraini band Majaz made the three-day festival memorable to all.
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