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Children perform traditional songs at Lok Virsa festival

Children perform traditional songs at Lok Virsa festival

ISLAMABAD: On the third day of Lok Virsa’s annual folk festival, child singers put on performances of their local, traditional songs at Garden Avenue in Shakarparian.

The event was attended by families and music lovers from both Islamabad and Rawalpindi. The chief guest for the event was renowned musicologist S.M. Shahid.

Mr Shahid appreciated Lok Virsa’s efforts towards reviving the diverse traditions of the country and for giving children the opportunity to express and explore their creativity.

“We should continue with similar efforts to raise awareness about our culture and music in the younger generation, who are the future of Pakistan”, he said.

In her address, Lok Virsa Executive Director Dr Fouzia Saeed said Lok Virsa wanted to sow the seeds of a pluralistic society in the youth of the country.

“We believe events like this one will tell children a little about our rich musical heritage. It will also contribute towards creating ownership in them regarding their cultural heritage and will reaffirm our identity as a multi-cultured, pluralistic country,” she said.

Talking to Dawn, Munir Ahmed, who is a resident of Islamabad, said he had learned a lot about different cultures at the event.

“When I read about the festival in the papers, I wanted to bring my family as well, but because of their exams, my children could not come,” he said.

He said for next time, Lok Virsa should consult exam schedules before hosting such events, especially since they were aimed at educating children.

The Lok Mela focuses on the diversity of the provinces and provides people with an opportunity to witness the other cultures in the country and to listen to authentic folk culture. They can also learn traditional skills from master artisans.

The daily features of the Mela include provincial cultural pavilions, folkloric song and dance ensembles, rural musicians, cultural nights, shopping mall, craft bazaar, artisans at work, traditional food court and many other attractions.

Performers and artisans from across the country have been called to participate in the festival, which include cultural pavilions, folk dances and performances, musical nights, a shopping area, craft bazaars, traditional food stalls and many other attractions. The festival will continue till April 10.

Published in Dawn, April 4th, 2016

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