‘Kochi Ghazal’ Series Inaugurated by Umbai at General Hospital

Opening new doors to the magical world of Ghazals, the first programme in the ‘Kochi Ghazal’ musical series was inaugurated by renowned singer Umbai here today at the Government General Hospital, Ernakulam, as part of the weekly ‘Arts and Medicine’ show organised by the Kochi Biennale Foundation.
Noted Ghazal singer and music composer Janardhan Athri and singer Sajna Zakaria delighted the audienAnM_ Kochi Ghazalce as they took to stage with renditions of peppy and melodious numbers.
Athri began the show with ‘Ranjish Sahi’, a popular ghazal by Mehdi Hassan and moved onto his own composition, ‘Mazhayil Kuthirna Rathri’. He was accompanied by Sajna Zakaria who concluded the musical extravaganza with the Sufi number ‘Dama Dam Mast Kalander. Together they rendered over 10 songs in a musical journey covering late 60’s numbers to the 2017 hits.
“To me anything that has ‘rag and tal’ is appreciated as music. I don’t strictly follow any genre of music. The passion of music had been ignited in me right from childhood when I started off with bhajans. To perform for the solace of patients is a rare chance one gets and I am indebted to KBF for the opportunity,” said Janardhan Athri whose mantra is ‘Music for All’.
The versatile singer, popularly known as ‘Athri’ after his clan name, has to his credit a whopping 1,500 live television and stage shows. An avid guitar, tabla and harmonium player he specializes in a combination of Ghazals and Bollywood songs.
His own music compositions, a newly released peppy Sufi music video in collaboration with Bollywood lyricist Taufique Palavi and Audi India, ‘Ab Lagan Lagi’, has gained over 5 lakh views on Facebook. His Malayalam Ghazal, ‘ Mazhayil Kuthirna Rathri’ and ‘Manzil Hai Pana’ in collaboration with Harley Davidson, which falls in the ‘rock’ category has also created waves among music lovers.
“Kochi has around hundred known and unknown musicians, a tradition predominantly of ghazal singers in an area, of approximately 4.5 sq. kms in and around Fort Kochi and Mattancherry. Wit
h this series of musical programmes, the ‘Kochi Ghazal’, we are trying to bring these singers to the forefront and getting the trend in vogue again’, said Bonny Thomas , KBF Trustee.
The 169th edition of the all Wednesday series is an initiative of the KBF in association with Mehboob Memorial Orchestra and CAFS (Casino Air Caterers & Flight Services) providing solace to patients through therapeutic music. Amey Athri, Athri’s son was on the Tabla supporting the singers. The CEO, George Dominic of CAFS, also spoke on the occasion.

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