Samia Malik


Samia Malik, (a) singer of extraordinary power and Joan Baez-like eloquence

Geeta Doctor The Hindu

JAMMU. It was the perfect setting for people-to-people contact between India and Pakistan. Six women artistes, including one of Pakistani origin from three different continents came together to perform a powerful dance drama choreographed by the acclaimed danseuse, Mallika Sarabhai.

Among the 1000-strong audience was the People's Democratic Party president, Mehbooba Mufti, who is herself a champion of good relations between the neighbours.  The centre of attraction was Samia Malik, a Pakistani by origin, who now is a schoolteacher in Britain.

She became the first Pakistani artiste to perform in Jammu and Kashmir in the last 10 years.

When asked about the official statement of the Pakistan Government that it had not given permission to any artiste to perform in the State, Ms. Malik shot back: "I am not representing any country and I have given myself the permission to perform here."

The main theme of the dance drama was the suffering of women all around the world. It gave a call to celebrate diversity and womanhood. Luv Puri The Hindu

Samia Malik’s singing in Urdu is gorgeous, as are her melodies, but gorgeous though these are her writing is even more striking. She writes in the Urdu tradition of sung poetry and takes it to completely new territory by giving voice to her own and possibly a generation of Asian women’s experience in Britain. It is wonderfully powerful writing, and those lyrics which are not hers (from the compilation of Pakistani women’s writing ‘We Sinful Women’) are no less powerful Alan Scott Resonance

Personal and yet familiar, a journey of empowerment and liberation Anjali Dhal The Hindu

Soulful lyrics weave the personal into the universal…a unique experience that is bound to stir and move

Meenakahik Marik The Times of India

…a vivid fusion of mystical poetry, liberationist politics and deep trance grooves, one of those magic projects that grow in intensity with every listen…

David Lewis Exclaim

A wake up call Sarwar Kashari Kashmir Images

…beautifully played, finely written, and warmly welcoming…Simon Hopkins Motion

A sensual and melodic sound that will appeal to a culturally mixed once romantic and political poems of women’s assertion. Though entitled The Colour of the Heart, somewhere along the line this compact disc touches the soul  Debjani Chatterjee & Brian D’Arcy: Writing in Education    

The soulful singing traces the loss of innocence from a joyous girlhood to lamentations on a silent and alien city. The loss of innocent playful girlhood into one wherein traditions and customs shackle women is skillfully done. But it can also be the story of any woman across different countries. Changing cultures and countries does not remove the initial experience of rejection. If at all, it only pushes it further like a knife. Difference is a dirty word.

The largest group of people who suffer because of difference or indifference are women. The
male psychological fear of castration is played out on women in the form of circumcision of the clitoris literally and of the tongue figuratively by stifling the voices of women. ‘We sinful women…’ sings Samia in both English and Hindi. Different countries, different, languages, different women, one story.  It ends in a standing ovation in a symbol of both hope and solidarity. This is a performance that celebrates differences doubly. The difference of being a woman and pain and joy of being a different woman

Anjou Musafir The Asian Times

A note of hope…which touched many hearts Radhika Rajamani The Hindu

Passionate and easily understood across international frontiers The Asian Times

Renditions in both English and Urdu capture in poignant writing the struggle faced by women… The Daily Jang

…the hauntingly beautiful voice and presence of singer and writer Samia Malik. Her songs are in the Ghazal style, poems set to music.  But she takes this traditional form and turns it into something with a contemporary edge. She explores the struggle faced by women in today’s changing world and she sings movingly of her need to keep in touch with her own language and culture...a truly multi-cultural performance… Burton Mail

A bold statement…the rapt audience witnessed the power of the contemporary artist to take up contentious issues with frankness as well as sensitivity using heart rendering creative poetry and song Lalit Gupta Kashmir Excelsior




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Page updated May 2017