Riffat Sultana and Party
Friday, November 7, 2014 at 8:00 PM
Crowell Concert Hall
$22 general public; $19 senior citizens, Wesleyan faculty/staff/alumni, non-Wesleyan students; $6 Wesleyan students
“Riffat Sultana channels the musical wisdom of 500 years and eleven generations of master musicians from India and Pakistan, bringing a spectacular voice and talent to the world stage.”
—Banning Eyre, Afropop Worldwide
Pre-concert talk at 7:15pm by Professor of Religion Peter Gottschalk.
Sufi fusion singer Riffat Sultana broke boundaries in 1995 by becoming the first woman from her family’s musical lineage to perform in public. She is the daughter of the late Ustad Salamat Ali Khan, who is universally recognized as one of the finest Pakistani classical singers of his time. Ms. Sultana makes her New England debut at Wesleyan, accompanied by an all-star ensemble that includes her brother Sukhawat Ali Khan on vocals and harmonium, her husband Richard Michos (Shiraz Ali Khan) on guitar, Gurdeep Singh on tabla, dholak and dhol (double-headed drums), Jay Gandhi on bansuri (bamboo flute), and very special guest Mitch Hyare, an internationally renowned dhol master.
Ms. Sultana will perform a program that begins with classical repertoire, including traditional Punjabi folk, devotional Sufi songs, and Indian classical music, as well as ghazals and geets (traditional, romantic/poetic folk songs). The evening will then transition to the Sufi fusion music of Riffat Sultana and Party (Shabaz), where folk Pakistani-Indian music intersects with Western rhythms, electronic beats, and grooves.
Ms. Sultana has collaborated with Nile Rodgers, Quincy Jones, the Netherlands' Metropole Orchestra and Indian singer Dhroeh Nankoe, Egyptian singer Hakim, Transglobal Underground, and the late DJ Cheb i Sabbah; and has shared the stage with Patti Austin, Lionel Loueke, Richard Bona, Michael Franti, and Ben Harper, among others.
Click here to listen to "Voices of Muslim Women, and Art With a Sense of Place," a half hour segment on WNPR's Where We Live with John Dankosky, which features guests Riffat Sultana, Pamela Tatge, Director of the Center for the Arts at Wesleyan University, and Dr. Feryal Salem, Assistant Professor of Islamic Scriptures and Law, Co-Director of the Islamic Chaplaincy Program, and Director of the Imam and Muslim Community Leadership Certificate Program at Hartford Seminary.