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News |  14 Jan 2019 17:54 |  By RnMTeam

Experience a different side of Kavita Seth at Haroof

MUMBAI: We all know and love her for Iktara and Murraba songs. We all know that her name is synonymous with soulful music. Kavita Seth is the name and voice we all love to hear when we need peace. Beyond the realm of movie music, her fans have also heard her at many live shows. However, come February 2019, we will get a chance to hear her live in a cosy set-up.

This format is not new in Indian Culture. What is known as mehfil in Urdu or baithaks in musical language is how music has been experienced from time immemorial. With the advent of event management culture and growing ambitions of event managers, began the era of big-ticketed shows, causing fading out of the mehfil culture. Haroof - a baithak revival series, curated, initiated and helmed by Alleyah Asghar, aims to propel and promote Hindustani gayaki forms amongst audiences, performing arts and music platform that is either known for its maestros and stalwarts like Ustad Zakir Hussain or vocalists like Kaushiki Chakrobarty and Ashwini Bhide-Deshpande.  While all the known names deserve every ounce of respect and felicitation from us as an audience, Haroof wants to bring the younger crop of musicians from the same form of gayaki tradition into the public domain.

The beauty of such baithaks or intimate sessions is the personal connection that the artiste and the audience have. Kavita agrees about the same, “This is the most beautiful part. While it is amazing to perform for an audience of 1000s, this personalised connect is missing. As an artist, it is extremely gratifying to experience the response for your music up, close and personal.”

Mehfils reverberate with the waah-waahs and are usually attended by genuine lovers and connoisseurs.  Kavita continues, “As an artist, such concerts are a gateway to present something new as opposed to big concerts, where the playlists are curated for a large audience.”

Haroof founder Alleyah Asgghar said, “Haroof is an alphabet in Urdu. All forms of gayaki rest on 'bol' or words that belong to a lyrical verse, and Haroof captures the essence of that poetry. While we all live in a high octane world of electronic media and streaming on the go, I wanted to revisit the experience of music, much like how it was in the 'baithak' era of Hindustani tradition, where the audience and artists would spend evenings in a close group environment. Haroof is a celebration of that experiential form of music and brings artists closer to a discerning audience in a very warm ambience.”

Kavita, who is known for her Sufiana Kalaams and ghazals, will be presenting something unique at Haroof. Without divulging many details, she shared, “Alleyahji has also been asking me, what I am planning to perform. All I can say, that I will be presenting some of the unheard and choicest ghazals and Sufi songs, which are very close to my heart.”

A post graduate in Music, Sangeet Alankar from Gandharva Mahavidyalaya and some who is still learning classical music, it is obvious to ask if she is planning to perform anything in Raagdaari music or Classical music. On this, she says, “Whatever I compose these days, I make sure it is based on raags. Mainly because since Raagdari music has been there for an eternity, people have a connection with it. If you offer something absolutely new, it takes times people to find connect. For example, the beautiful ghazal in Barfi, Phir Le Aaya Dil is also loosely a classical composition and hence people loved it instantly. Therefore, most of my compositions are Raag based.”

Reminiscing her experiences with baithaks, she said, “I remember attending so many of them, even as an audience member. Even when I lived in Bareily and also when I moved to Mumbai, I have attended so many of them. The amazing part is that you don’t understand when the time flies.”

One such memory she has of an amazing evening with Pakistani Qawaal, Faiz Ali Faiz, which she shares, “The well known Qawwal was visiting India. I along with a friend of mine decided to attend one such baithak. We avoided informing that we are coming. The evening unfolded into impromptu music session. Later, someone introduced me to the Qawwal and we shared many musicals offerings. The evening turned into night and night into morning.”

The singer/composer is extremely delighted to perform here and sincerely look forward to it, “I congratulate Alleyaji for her unique idea and wish her success for the same. It was a much-needed initiative in the music world right now.”

Kavita Seth will be performing for the Haroof series on 16 February 2019 at The G5A Foundation for Contemporary Culture. The tickets will be available on BookMyShow, starting this Friday.