The halls of the Académie Diplomatique Internationale in Paris were filled with the mystical music of the Pamir mountains during a concert given by the Badakhshan Ensemble last month. The ensemble blended devotional poetry, folk songs and the deep and inspiring sounds of instruments traditional to Central Asia.
Organised by the Ismaili Council for France in conjunction with the Aga Khan Music Initiative, the performance on 7 November captivated members of the Jamat and a number of distinguished guests.
“This initiative is about promoting and celebrating cultural diversity,” says Shamir Samdjee, President of the Ismaili Council for France. “Music can be a vector of peace between peoples of different traditions, and sharing in it is a way to enhance pluralism within society.”
Warm applause greeted the musicians and dancers, whose visit to the country was part of a European tour.
The Badakhshan Ensemble is supported by the Aga Khan Music Initiative, a programme of the Aga Khan Trust for Culture. The Music Initiative aims to preserve the musical heritage of Central Asia by seeking out talented artists like those belonging to the Ensemble and promoting their work worldwide, as well as through educational programming.
Founded in 1926, the Académie Diplomatique Internationale is an international organisation focused on modern diplomacy and international affairs. Mawlana Hazar Imam was elected President of the organisation in 2000, and during his presidency, he has focused the Académie’s efforts on diplomatic training and the study of emerging dynamics in international relations and diplomacy.