LAHORE, May 16: An awesome music and dance night punctuated with some out-of-the-world performances by Chinese and Pakistani artistes stole many a heart at Alhamra Art Centre’s Hall No 1 on The Mall that was packed to its maximum capacity of 1,000 seats.

The stage was an emblem of a dreamy ambiance. The lavender of tulips, roses and marigolds bedecked on and around the stage had some heady fragrance. The flags of centuries old friends on each side of the stage were explicit of the pride of two nations and the trust they have in each other. The audience was a delighted mix of Chinese and Pakistani folks. The organisers, as a token of love, distributed tulips to the audience.

The gala was organised by Tourism Development Corporation of Punjab under a youth exchange programme between the two countries.

The opening performance of the night was by Rahe-e-Danish School, Cantonment. The young performers presented a boogie to greet their Chinese friends. The catchy performance was followed by four dance sequences by National Performing Arts Group of the Pakistan National Council of Arts.

The first of four dances was peacock dance. Though it’s a traditional dance, it has not lost its charm when it shows the peacock preening in its glory till it weeps upon seeing its unadorned feet.

The next performance was based on the tragic story of ‘Anarkali’. The dance left many a heart burning for the performance had a considerable emotional push. The immortal Sufi classic of Amir Khusro ‘Aaj Rang Hai’, was the third performance by the Pakistani regiment of dancers. Carrying the mystic flavour the performance won a thunderous clap from the audience.

Kathak, the art of story telling through dance, was performed by Zakria Iqbal to the tunes of Raag Bageshri. Naila Riaz, the esteemed Kathak exponent and teacher at Alhamra Art Academy of Performing Arts, did the paranth, which is reciting the dance syllables as per tradition.

The last performance from the Pakistani side was a dance titled ‘Dawn to Dusk’, a dance depicting the hardworking life of peasants and expression of joy on a good harvest. It was a catchy upbeat presentation.

The artistes from China Youth Delegation, a striking contrast of finest music and dance left many in awe with some captivating and exhilarating performances. China opened its show on a high note, presenting a dance based on a unique idea. The presentation was based on a story of a calligrapher who holding a painting brush in hand reveals his story of creation through canvass. The performance was a nice amalgamation of visual and performing arts. It was followed by a melodious instrumental rendition by a female Chinese artiste. Clad in a ravishing red dress, the lady played on three traditional Chinese music instruments and it was a treat for music fanciers. The music frenzy followed a lovely dance by another Chinese lady that was traditional in spirit and embedded in Chinese culture.

The evening concluded on a fine note, as a Chinese and a Pakistani singer together sung Dil Dil Pakistan.

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