Vidya Shah performed at the IHC on the 21st of September at the Annual Peace Day Festival called ‘Rhythms of Peace’.

Vidya Shah is a renowned singer of classical and semi classical style. She has been trained in ‘Khayal’ by Shubha Mudgal and in ‘thumri’. ‘dadra’ and ‘ghazal gayaki’ by Shanti Hiranand. She has also composed and recorded for several projects. She has a very affable personality and her smile immediately connects with the audience.

‘Peace’ as we know it, has many facets. One has to be at peace with one’s inner self, with one’s environment and the harmony and peace spreads to community, nation and the world. Everybody desires peace but the destructive forces try to hinder this process. Music and poetry, as Vidya said, are important threads in the weave of life. Poetry has always reflected upon the turmoil of every era. Musicians, in their own language, have tried to bring peace.

The first song of the recital was a ‘kafia’ which stressed oneness with the eternal beloved, God. ‘Mera ishq bhi tu, mera pyaar bhi tu’. The words touched everybody’s heart. They call for total surrender to God, to attain eternal peace.
The next song, a composition by Dharamdas, a disciple of Sant Kabir, an ode to Kabir for his secular teachings. He was a saint to both Hindus and Muslims. A Guajarati song was about the futility of war. The next song was by a 7th century poet Wali Gujarati.The satirical poetry highlighted the rift between Hindus and Muslims as a consequence of which both religions have lost their soul of humanity. The rendition was very sensitively done. A composition by Sahir Ludhyanvi said that warring communities will lead to destruction. ‘Aaj ki apni khamoshi, kal sannata kehlayegi’. Even Surdas had a very astute perception of what the world would come to. Vidya next sang his ‘Karman ki gati nyari’, a composition which highlights the irony of life. The final composition was about the helplessness of the poet in rectifying the situation. ‘Ai logo khamosh raho, kuchh kehne ka waqt nahin hai’. The touching lyrics, the very relevant theme and Vidya’s mesmerizing rendition made the entire recital quite meaningful and enjoyable.