Fringe 2019- SUFI MUSIC PARTY-Farhan Shah and Brothers


Farhan Shah and Brothers- Church Of The Trinity -Sunday 24th Feb 6pm

Sufi Music Party featuring brilliant Qawwali singer Farhan Shah and his very talented brothers  deliver a joyous celebration of Sufi Music and traditional dance incorporating a fusion of traditional and modern music and food to feed the heart and soul.  Held at the architecturally interesting venue of The Church of The Trinity on Goodwood Road this was indeed a party.   The Adelaide folk and music legend Keith Preston introduced the event not only acting as MC but also contributing as a member of The Farhan Shah and Brothers Ensemble.

As we entered the venue a warm welcoming aroma of freshly prepared Pakistani/North Indian food greeted us.  We checked in then availed ourselves of some of the delicious fare presented by Farhan Sha’s delightful wife and her dedicated and friendly crew.  Samosas, Chat, Biryani, Dhal  were all on offer and once sated we wandered off to the main space for the performance.  There was an excellent crowd and almost no seats to spare.

To kick off the party we were treated to Syrian musician Zuhir Naji Arabic Ensemble. … including his 12 yo son. The Oud, percussion, tambourine and vocals blended beautifully despite some minor sound mixing problems.   This was the entree and the room was suitably warmed up for the main course.

After a 15 minute intermission where we scuttled off to the dining room to scoff more delectable treats we were invited to return for the headline act.   Farhan Shah and his Brothers including Keith Preston kicked off a rivetting, lively set of Sufi Fusion music incorporating traditional Qawwali singing and chanting and modern western rhythms and instruments.  The combo of musicians including organ, keyboards, percussion and guitar created a perfect platform for Farhan Shah to launch his soaring vocal  acrobatics to astounding effect.  His voice control was rapturous demonstrating an operatic range combined with blistering passion.  Shah doesnt merely sing the notes, he ignites them !.  Taking all of us with him.

The audience were willing captives and many took up the offer to dance .   Shah is a master of both his vocal artistry but also his stage craft as he engaged his audience in the traditional call and response back and forth build up  that encapsulates this musical art form.   By the end not one person who was able to stand and dance was left seated.  A remarkable performance and a wonderful experience.  Sure there are slicker, high end professional music shows on offer but few with more heart and soul.

Review by Gary Clarke  –              4. K stars


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