LAHORE: Lahore’s Alhamra Arts Council is all set to release its second musical gala next month, titled Alhamra Unplugged Season 2. Around 21 songs will be performed by various artists including younger talent, senior and foreign musicians. Preparations for the upcoming season are in full swing at the Alhamra Arts Centre.
The council launched its first season in 2017, following Coke Studio. The initial installment saw the release of eight songs with mostly younger singers performing. Alhamra also chose artists from across the nation and had them perform at a studio also set up by the council itself.
Sources provide that the last season only had eight songs due to a small budget. But this time around, the Punjab Government has allocated a Rs50 million budget as compared to a Rs15 million for season one. The success of the first few songs is what has led the government to allocate a better budget this time. The funds will be given directly to the artists now as last time, there was a lot of corruption and mismanagement.
This season, senior singers Sureya Multanikar and her daughter Rahat Multanikar will be among the performers, while musician Abu Bakar Javed will be serving as the project and video director.Speaking with The Express Tribune, Javed shared his sentiments regarding the upcoming project. “This time, there will be folk songs, classical numbers, rock and some nice, light music. We explored numerous places in order to find the relevant talent, including Lahore School of Economics (LUMS), Punjab University (PU), Beaconhouse National University (BNU) and many others.”
He added, “This time we have focused on gharanas and senior singers. This will be the first time gharana families will be making an appearance. As we have a good budget this time, we have also arranged for international musicians to participate.”
The director went on to claim that this year’s Alhamra Unplugged will be better than Coke Studio. “The audio and visuals for our songs are all complete and next month, we will be holding a ceremony where big personalities will be present.” He went on to appreciate the efforts of Punjab Government and Alhamra Arts Council’s administration for the cooperation.