BOLLYWOOD SUPERSTAR HITS THE MIDLANDS
A global Bollywood music star says he can’t wait to perform in front of thousands of fans when he returns to the Midlands next month – with the launch of a new show format no audience has ever seen before.
Rahat Fateh Ali Khan will be performing four hours of his greatest Qawwali hits at Coventry’s Ricoh Arena on Friday, 12 August – over 30 years after visiting the city with his famous late uncle Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan as part of his 1985 tour.
Qawwali is a form of devotional music popular in South Asia and its history stretches back over 700 years.
It’s been a whirlwind period for the Pakistani singer, who has recently celebrated his latest theme tune Jag Ghoomeya from Bollywood movie Sultan reaching number one in the charts, as well as his other song Zahoori Ta clocking up a staggering 100 million views on YouTube.
The 42-year-old was also at Oxford University yesterday to receive an honorary shield and tour the site where a 200-year old music room was opened for him to visit and perform with music students.
Speaking to the assembled media at the Ricoh Arena earlier today, Rahat said: “I’m really excited to have been given the opportunity to perform in front of my fans in the Midlands.
“People can expect a real showcase performance from me. For the first time ever, I’ll be performing in a new show format which no fans will have seen before, but I’m confident the Midlands crowd will be the best audience to catch the first glimpse.
“I’ll be breaking my performance into three different parts - the first of which will be a range of iconic Bollywood anthems over the last 30 years, which will then lead onto the second part of 45 minutes of devotional love songs in an unplugged format followed by a host of Qawwali songs to see me close the show.
“I visited the region a few years ago but a lot has changed since I last played in Coventry in 1985 as a young boy with my uncle. I’m aiming to follow in his footsteps and put on a great show for everybody.”
Over the past 20 years, the award-winning singer, who has over six million Facebook fans and 16 albums, has performed soundtracks for over 80 Bollywood films, including the biggest Indian film of this year, Sultan.
Andy Gibb, managing director of the Ricoh Arena, said: “Seeing Rahat Fateh Ali Khan perform live in the Midlands is quite rare, let alone in the UK, so we are incredibly privileged to be able to welcome another global icon to the Ricoh Arena and the city of Coventry.
“We were amazed to find out only just recently that Rahat has already performed in Coventry while under the tutelage of his uncle, so we’d love to be able to find some people who went to one of the Midlands concerts more than 30 years ago to hear about their memories and invite them along to see Rahat live.
“Tickets for this one-off performance are still available and we’re encouraging people to buy in advance to avoid disappointment on the day.”
Tickets for Rahat Fateh Ali Khan’s greatest hits concert start from £20, and can be purchased by calling the Ricoh Arena ticket office on 02476 786411 or by visitingwww.eticketing.co.uk/ricoharena .