World renowned artists including Nizami, Warsi, Fanna Fi Allah (USA) and Shye Bin Tzur (Israel)

sets the stage with famous cores

February 19, 2016, New Delhi: Taking the soulful renditions of Sufi music beyond

borders, RAASRANG by Krishna Prerna Charitable Trust organized the first of its kind &

first ever International Qawwali Festival Taali Ho! at the Amphitheatre of The Ashok

Hotel, Chanakyapuri this weekend. The two day event was full of devotional performances

by the greatest Qawwals from across the world, including Warsi brothers (Hyderabad

Deccan), Nizami Brothers (Delhi), Fannah-Fi-Allah (USA) and Shye Ben Tzur (Izrael), once

again proving that Qawwali not only transcends boundaries but also one’s senses.

Present at the occasion was former Chief Minister, Jammu and Kashmir and a great Qawwali

lover Mr. Farooq Abdullah. The event also witnessed senior delegation of Indian Council for

Cultural Relations (ICCR) and India Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC).

Apart from the magical Sufi performances by the artistes, the event also screened the

documentary on the “Evolution of Qawwali as a music genre and its journey over the

years”. The first ever documentary on Qawwali, directed by Tahir Hussain of Fannah-Fi-

Allah (USA), showcased the changes that the genre has undergone, with qawwals

performing fusion of old genre with a modern touch. Also performing at the festival was

Djembefola United, the percussion band that kicked off the fest with its resonating djembe


Speaking on the occasion, Ms. Sujata Thakur, General Manager- Corporate and Marketing &

Public Relations, ITDC said, “It is thrilling to witness these mesmerizing performances by

some of the most prominent Qawwals of our times. It is great to see the popularity that the

Sufi music has received; international festivals like these not only entertain but also

encourage today’s generation to explore the mainstream Qawwali singing. The Ashok is

extremely proud to be a part of this unique, International Qawwali Festival and we look

forward to host more such events at our open theatre.”

Speaking about the festival, Mr. Arun Budhiraja, Raasrang Festival Curator said, “”Raasrang is

creator and curator of this festival and makes other unique festivals like Raasrang World

Flute Festival, Raasrang World Percussion Festival, Raasrang Holi Utsav and Being Well

Festival – Prana. After a big hit in New Delhi, Taali Ho was even super hit in Bhopal. As a

special mention, Fannah-Fi-Allah-USA and Warsi Brothers-Hyderabad took the cake away.”

The artists who performed during the festival were:-

Shye Ben Tzur (Israel)


Residing in India and Israel, Shye Ben Tzur is an Israeli singer and musician who compose

qawwalis in Hebrew, Urdu, and Hindi, combining Sufi devotional music with Western

elements. Born in New York City, Ben Tzur became interested in Indian music after seeing

Indian classical musicians Hariprasad Chaurasia and Zakir Hussain perform in Jerusalem. A

devoted film enthusiast, he has produced and directed music videos and short films, and

composed music for visual media. Also a poet, Ben Tzur’s first collection of poetry, Souls

Expressions, was published in Israel in 1999.



Tahir Faridi Qawwali & his ensembles have chosen to take this genre to the world stage.

The intensity of their stage performance, with its smooth melodic overtures, fierce leaps of

vocal passion, heavy rhythmic grooves & rich vocal choruses has captivated audiences in

countries as Pakistan, India, Africa, Thailand, Europe, Indonesia, the USA and beyond.

Nizami bros (Delhi)


Ghulam Sabir Nizami and Ghulam Waris Nizami are one of the most famed Qawwali Singer

in the Sufi style, Astana Gayki as well as the modern Qawwali tradition. They belong to the

legendary Sikandrabad Ghrana, which gave Indian Musical Giants such as Ustad Qudratulla

Khan Sahib and Ustad Kifayatullah Khan Saheb.

Warsi Bros (Hyderabad Deccan)


Nazeer Ahmed Khan Warsi and Naseer Ahmed Khan Warsi descend from a family whose

reputation precedes them. Warsi Brothers are the music bearers of the gayeki of Dilli

gharana and are noted for their melody and improvisation. They are renowned for their

traditional Sufiana Qawwali, Ghazal, Thumri, Bhajan and Classical Bandish.

About The Ashok

The Ashok is a flagship hotel of India Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC) and the

foremost of Delhi’s five-star hotels. Set in a prime location in Delhi’s Diplomatic Enclave,

The Ashok is a distinctive landmark, its rose-pink walls and arched arc-turreted contours

set it apart from the glass and concrete conformity of other hotels. The Ashok has 550

rooms including 389 well appointed premium rooms, 150 suites, 10 one bedroom deluxe

suites built in apartment style and 1 grand presidential suite, each of it depicting vibrant

ethos of the country. It offers a wide array of international cuisines including North West

Frontier, Oudhi, Continental, Jain & South Indian Cuisine while re-introducing the

Chinese, Lebanese and Pan Asian cuisine. Its superb collection meeting and banquet venues

including a 16,400+ sq ft convention hall, a 7,400 + sq ft banquet hall and a friendship lounge

besides party rooms and the landscaped gardens for outdoor functions and theme events,

The Ashok is one of the most popular MICE venues in the city.

About Krishna Prerna Charitable Trust

With a mission to conserve and restore heritage buildings and create avenues for the

protection of traditional implements Krishna Prerna Charitable Trust is dedicated to

promote and showcase heritage and Indian culture in India and overseas market. The trust

also thrives on social-economic transformation of rural and remote areas of India, especially

the weaker and socially underprivileged groups, through physical, social, cultural and

economic development of rural people, groups and institutions. The Trust encourages local

rural community participation as a means to distribute wealth and generate local

employment opportunity.


About the author



Neha Tyagi - Publisher at Glamour Mantra Magazine

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