THE STRINGS DUO ALONG WITH A STAR STUDDED LINE-UP AS JUDGES ON THE AZME ALISHAN NATIONAL SONG COMPETITION

By Bushra Khalid Syed

Lahore, June 2, 2010 – Riding the wave of success of its previous initiatives from earlier this year, the Azme Alishan movement launched the Azme Alishan National Song Competition with the support of international superstars Bilal Maqsood and Faisal Kapadia of Strings. The Azme Alishan movement’s manifesto is to revive the same spirit of nationhood and community that lies at the heart of the vision of Pakistan. Azme Alishan aims to highlight the great Pakistani youth musical talent within Pakistan and all across the world with this televised competition, which starts airing on your favorite channels with its first episode from Saturday, June 05, 2010. The TV shows will continue throughout the summer, concluding with the grand finale announcing the winner on August 14th.

The competition opened mid-March with a request for all Pakistanis from within and across borders to send in their original national song entries – no song covers were entertained. For the television show, a star studded jury panel has been established which will feature the likes of Pakistani super model Vinnie, the multifaceted Arshad Mahmood and acclaimed music producer and previous member of the legendry band Vital Signs, Shahzad Hassan (Shahi), Khalid Anwar from Aaroh, Najam Shiraz and many others as guest judges along with Strings who are the permanent judges.

On the first day of shooting, Arshad Mahmood, and the Strings judged the show. Speaking to us after the completion of the first episode, a jubilant Faisal Kapadia of Strings said, “This show highlights that the people of Pakistani are not only talented but they still posses the great resolve in their hearts that led to the formation of our dear homeland. This is a great initiative by Azme Alishan to give our nation a new anthem”.

The contest received an overwhelmingly high response and it became an immense task to shortlist the top 30 entries for the TV show. These 30 contestants will battle it out on the TV show where they will sing live in studio at the time of recording and shall contest to win for two great honors; one, to have their song win and become the official Azme Alishan anthem for Pakistan and second, to get a chance to have their song made on a professional 35mm video by an acclaimed director from Pakistan.

A composed Bilal Maqsood of the Strings stated, “When we sat in the judges seats we didn’t know what to expect but it was an awesome experience and we were amazed to see this young talent and their passion towards their original song lyrics and compositions”.

The competition will be to choose initially top 10 finalists and then the winner with the winning song. These will also be featured on the Azme Alishan national song compilation CD. To listen to all shortlisted entries and rank your favorites and also to find out more details on the Azme Alishan song competition keep logging on to www.azmealishan.com.