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Sania Saeed conducted the ceremony as Tina Sani sang Faiz's poems.

The year 2011 was declared as the year of Faiz Ahmed Faiz. In remembrance of the poet, the Aga Khan University recently held a musical evening titled, Tina Sani sings Faiz.

There are very few singers that command respect the way Tina Sani does. Tina Sani elaborated on each poem she sung and the reason Faiz wrote it. Sania Saeed conducted the programme. Speaking about the poet, she related that her late father, Mansoor Saeed, exposed the ills of society through his theatre group Dastak and literary figures would visit him regularly. One such visitor was Faiz Ahmad Faiz, whom Sania described as one of the many nanas who would visit their house for intellectual discussions.

She was too young to understand his poetry at the time, but as she grew older she found it just as relevant today. “He was like a comrade, his thoughts were soft but effective and inspired me as it did others in the plays we did,” she added.

Sania set the ball rolling for the evening by reading a poem by Faiz on Pakistan and then invited Tina on stage. “Faiz’s poetry never gets old because the problems and situations in this country have not changed. Today we sing him because of his beautiful poetry, missing out on the reasons behind his poems that had predictions. I urge the youth here to bring a change which is needed all the more today,” said Tina Sani.

Though there was a nasal tone in her voice due to a bad cold, Tina sang with the usual depth and passion which she is famous for, delighting the audience with Nahi nigah mein manzil tau justajoo hie sahi, Dashte tanhai mein, Mujh sey pehli si mohabbat meray mehboob na maang,Woh button nay dalay waswasay and many other poems.

The highlight of the evening was when she invited Sania Saeed to read out a poem of Faiz, Jo choot gaya so choot gaya, ansoonon say kahan juray which Tina sang afterwards. The evening ended with Hum dekhen gey, which never fails to rouse audiences.