IT'S FRIDAY: Experience healing power of the arts

Art therapy is not an entirely new concept, yet an entire multi-arts festival - International Ancient Arts Festival on May 16-17 - is being dedicated to the therapeutic benefits of music and dance. One of the finest exponents of ghazals, Pakistani classical vocalist Ustad Hamid Ali Khan, will be one of the festival's big draws.

'I am very excited about coming to India again because it is an extension of my homeland - my forefathers were from India,' Ali said from Pakistan.

'The last time I came to perform, it was for the Punjabi Academy, which hosted a Sufi festival two years back. Daler Mehndi and I did a show together. This time I will perform a mix of Sufi and Classical songs.'

Wang Fie Geqin from China will perform at the International Ancient Arts Festival

Wang Fie Geqin from China will perform at the International Ancient Arts Festival

Ali was fulsome in his praise for Delhi's crowd. 'It really appreciates my kind of music,' he said.

The festival, which will see artists and scholars coming from countries such as Pakistan, China, Iran and the USA, kick-starts with a collaborative performance highlighting the yogic significance of Rabindranath Tagore's poems.

The dance forms include Odissi (Reela Hota), Kathak (Vidha Lal), creative dance (Naresh Kumar), Gaudiya Nritya, and Pung Cholom as well as Ras Leela (Prem Manipur Cultural Association). Let the healing force of the arts be with you in the week ahead.

  • The International Ancient Arts Festival will be held at Kamani Auditorium, Copernicus Marg, New Delhi, on May 16-17. Log on to www.kamaniauditorium. org for details.

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