Malini Awasthi has performed in Düsseldorf and Bonn before, but it’s her first time in Berlin, so her excitement of being invited to perform at the Tagore Center, Berlin, on June 12, is immeasurable. We catch up with the folk singer over the phone before she leaves for the show. She tells us, “Berlin is known for its history and musical culture, so when I got the invitation I was really surprised. I’m so looking forward to performing there.”
For the show, Awasthi has a rather interesting mix of songs. “I’ll be singing about the struggles of women, songs of longing and love, celebrating rain by the farmers, the pain of leaving your country and moving to a new one, the festival of colour and more. But what makes me different than other folk singers is that I talk about the songs. So, in this sense I take the role of a storyteller than a singer,” says the artiste.
Though a trained singer in classical music, it was folk that she chose to peruse. “I always felt the need to talk about traditional songs that showcase our culture the best. With globalisation, India that once only stood for Taj Mahal and Bharatnatyam, is now being known for its performing arts. While earlier the focus has been on visual art, today folk song is on the same platform, not just in India but across the world.”