Under the I Am Karachi consortium, the I Am Karachi Music Festival, spread over six days and designed with three separate components (Music Dialogues, Music Mentorship and Music Festival) achieved what it set out to do, make music matter. With an organizing committee that included Nida Butt and Hamza Jafri of Mad School, Shallum Xavier and Emu of Fuzon, Mekaal Hasan, who moved to Karachi for close to six weeks to participate in the festival, and Wajiha Naqvi and Amar Sham, the music festival, in the end, gave people plenty to root for. “An event like this forces people to talk about music,” Mekaal Hasan told Instep during the festival. There were several goals behind the music festival. “It’s about creating a tolerant society,” said Mekaal.
Not only did artists get a chance to perform onstage, live, but they also had opportunities to participate in music panels and discussions on various issues relating to music.
For instance, in one particularly engaging and informative sessions, Sara Haider talked about her stage fright and anxiety and revealed a side of her that one doesn’t usually get to hear.
In one session, Sikandar Mufti, drum and percussion master, spoke about the Beatles and pop music. Rachel Viccaji, a member of Coke Studio house band, spoke about what it means to sing backing vocals and used Coke Studio as a reference point.
By including acts like Sikandar Ka Mandar, Ali Suhail, Natasha Humera Ejaz and a few others, the I Am Karachi Music Festival gave younger, indie artists a chance to play on a much larger stage. These were performances filled with a lot of heart and promise.
Picture courtesy: PI Studio Facebook page