Mela Chiraga’an - An Evening of Sufi Poetry by Madho Lal Hussain

Performing Arts
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Saturday, 8th June 2024
From 7:30pm to 9:00pm (IST)
Rs. 499/- onwards

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The earthy kalaam of 16th-century Sufi faqeer and poet Shah Hussain, popularly known as Madho Lal Hussain, is an inseparable part of Punjab's soil and consciousness His unequivocal abdication of all kinds of high-sounding titles has assigned him the spot of ‘faqeer nimaana’ (the lowly faqeer) in our hearts.

Immerse yourself in the poetic genius's timeless wisdom in the latest captivating spectacle under the Haroof Baithak series. Imbued with an insatiable longing, his verses offer deep insights into the eternal mysteries of love, death, desire, and sublimation. Surrender to this sufi magic as Vocalist, Composer, and Narrator Radhika Sood breathes life into his deceptively simple and astonishingly relevant 'kaafis' (poems), accompanied by Neil Mukherjee on Guitar and Vinayak Netke on Tabla.

Join us as we recreate the festival of lamps, celebrating the revered poet-saint’s enduring legacy with a confluence of poetry, woven with music and narrative.


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Mela Chiraga’an - An Evening of Sufi Poetry by Madho Lal Hussain
Mela Chiraga’an - An Evening of Sufi Poetry by Madho Lal Hussain
Mela Chiraga’an - An Evening of Sufi Poetry by Madho Lal Hussain
Mela Chiraga’an - An Evening of Sufi Poetry by Madho Lal Hussain

Faculty

Radhika Sood

Radhika Sood

Vocalist, Composer, and Narrator

Radhika Sood NayakSufi kalaam vocalist & composer Radhika’s love for Sufi music was kindled by 17th century Sufi mystic Baba Bulleh Shah’s poetry. Starting her journey with Mumbai Kabir Festival, she has travelled with her songs to Kabir Yatras in Rajasthan, Malwa, Telangana, Delhi and several music festivals. Her first Music video 'Asan असां' which was poised to arrive in April 2020 when Covid struck became a fundraising medium through 'Goonj'. Radhika’s collaborations with Lahore based artistes has shaped two music videos woven around the poetry of 16th century Sufi faqeer Shah Hussain. This poet has also inspired a music video collaboration with handloom artistes from Kachchh in Gujarat. After an MBA from XLRI Jamshedpur, Radhika worked in Unilever and ANZ Grindlays for a few years before deciding to immerse herself in music.

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Neil Mukherjee

Neil Mukherjee

Guitarist

Neil Mukherjee Neil is a guitarist, award-winning music composer and producer from Kolkata. Founder member of Kolkata rock band Krosswindz, winner of LA Movie awards, Moondance film festival awards for best film score. Neil is trained in both Indian and western systems of music and has over twenty-five years of experience in Bollywood and Tamil film music industry, and has worked with leading Indian music directors which include the likes of Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy and AR Rahman. He currently lives and works in Mumbai as a music composer/producer and session guitar player for the advertising and film industry. www.neilmukho.com

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Vinayak Netke

Vinayak Netke

Tabla

Vinayak Netke Tabla artist Vinayak Netke began at 5, learning from Acharya Jialal Vasant and Suresh Wadkar. He has composed fusion albums, created music for TV/ads including MTV, Polo and Lloyd. His debut film 'Michael' was screened at Toronto, London, Shanghai fests. Rhythm arranger for National Anthem, Vinayak regularly jams with jazz pianists and Balkan bands in India and Europe. He is also a member of global fusion band RRC. He has accompanied Dr. L Subramaniam, Lata Mangeshkar, Ghazal maestro Ghulam Ali, Smt Kishori Amonkar, Dr N Rajam, among others. And played for composers Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy and Vishal Bhardwaj.

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Collaborations

ALSO Ideas | Content | Design
ALSO Ideas | Content | Design
Royal Opera House, Mumbai
Royal Opera House, Mumbai

Press Coverage

Poetry meets Passion

Poetry meets Passion

Sunday, June 2, 2024 Free Press Journal
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Poetic Genius

Poetic Genius

Sunday, June 2, 2024 Sunday Mumbai Mirror
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‘Mela Chiraagaa’n’ to light up Sufi poet Shah Hussain’s Kafi verses

‘Mela Chiraagaa’n’ to light up Sufi poet Shah Hussain’s Kafi verses

Sunday, June 2, 2024 Hindustan Times
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Words of a Saint

Words of a Saint

Friday, June 7, 2024 Mid-Day
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Attend An Evening Of Sufi Poetry

Attend An Evening Of Sufi Poetry

Friday, June 7, 2024 Outlook Traveller
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Blog

Sufi Poetry

Sufism, the mystical branch of Islam, has long been celebrated for its enduring influence on poetry across the globe. At the highest level, Sufi poetry is a mastery of language, where poets harness the transformative power of words to transcend the physical and spiritual realms. The divine nature of the every day is a central theme in Sufi poetry, with renowned poets like Rumi, Hafiz, Kabir, Attar, Bulleh Shah, and Rabia al-Basri exploring the sacred within the mundane. Their verses, often grounded in the lived experiences of the human condition, possess a remarkable ability to touch the hearts and souls of readers, even centuries after their creation. Their works have also left an indelible mark on the literary landscape, their poems serving as a conduit for the divine and a means of personal transformation. At the core of Sufi poetry lies the belief that language itself is a sacred tool, capable of transcending the physical and logical realms. Like the spoken words of a living saint, a poem's words are both the surface of its body and a mysterious storehouse of subtle and potent powers, which enter and influence the reader on levels beyond imagination and logical reckoning.


Saint of Lights - Madho Laal Hussain

Shah Hussain, a contemporary of the renowned Sufi saint Hazrat Mian Mir, was born in Taxali Gate of Lahore in 1538. At a tender age, he enrolled in the local mosque-madrassah, where he dedicated himself to learning the Quran and spending twelve years in prayers and meditation at the Darbar of Data Ganj Baksh. He also excelled in Hadith, Fiqh, Persian, Logic Mathematics and Medicine. Shah Hussain gave up organised religion and met Madho, a young Brahmin lad, with whom he developed a close association, earning him the title "Madhol Lal."


Kafi- a form of Sufi Poetry

Kafi is the classical form of Sufi music with origins in the Sindha and Punjab of South Asia region in Sindhi and Punjabi language. Shah Hussain a master of the Kafi poetic form,  he was the pioneer of the Kafi form of Punjabi poetry. His poems, known as "kafs," were not mere verses but vibrant tapestries woven with profound spiritual insights, earthy humour, and a passionate longing for the divine. His poems embraced humour, playfulness, and a deep love for spiritual growth, reflecting the rich roots of the Punjabi language and folk tradition. Musicians like Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Abida Parveen, Noor Jehan, Hamid Ali Bela and Junoon have popularised the kafi form of music globally.

 

Mela Chiragaan - Festival of Lamps

The Mela Chiragaan, also known as the Festival of Lights, is a three-day annual festival that marks the ‘urs’ of the Punjabi and Sufi saints Shah Hussain and Madho Lal of the 16th century. The festival takes place at the shrine of Hazrat Shah Hussain, located in Baghbanpura, Lahore, Pakistan every year in March. It is also known as the Mela Shalimar, as the shrine is near the Shalimar Gardens. Historically, the Mela Chirangan used to be the largest festival in Punjab, but it is now second to the Basant festival. The festival's roots can be traced back to the Mughal dynasty, and as per the ritual, the festival features a large bonfire called the 'Alao' or 'Mach' at the shrine of Hussain. People would throw in candles, and oils, and light up cotton lamps with the hope that it would fulfill their wishes. The fire stays lit throughout the entire duration of the Urs. Additionally, several Malangs (Sufi ascetics) also dress up and participate in the festivities, adding to the cultural richness of the event.

 

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