To mark the 75th Anniversary of the Independence of Pakistan, the Steering Committee for the Re-recording of the National Anthem of Pakistan looks forward to its official release by the Government of Pakistan on 14th August 2022.
Formed in June 2021, and further mandated by the present Government in April 2022, the Steering Committee has endeavoured to create a re-recording of the original national anthem that reflects updated inclusivity in voices and expression while ensuring the sanctity of the original words and the musical composition.
The stirring, powerful musical score by Ahmed Ghulam Ali Chagla was formally approved in 1949 by then-Prime Minister Quaid-e-Millat, Liaquat Ali Khan. However, the beautiful, inspiring words, as written later by Abu Al-Asar Hafeez Jalandhari were formally approved and then recorded with the music in 1954. That first recording featured a limited number of voices and used the modest technical facilities available at that time. In the succeeding 68 years, there have been major developments in music technology as also the emergence of diverse musical talent across the country.
In planning to produce new vocal and instrumental versions of the unchanged original words and composition, the Steering Committee applied an all-inclusive, gender-balanced approach and enlisted vocalists from diverse regional, cultural and ethnic backgrounds, from all religious faiths and musical genres. 48 musicians from the army, air force and navy bands skilfully played the musical instruments.
The re-recording in 2022 becomes an occasion to celebrate the rich diversity of the nation and reflect the unique national identity and solidarity of the people of Pakistan.
The History For The New One
A choir comprising of 30 vocalists rehearsed at the National Academy of Performing Arts (NAPA) in Karachi for several weeks, and in June 2022, 125 vocalists representing all provinces, regions and faiths were invited to participate in rehearsals and recordings in Islamabad. These artists were selected after the publication of public notices in leading newspapers inviting expressions of interest resulting in an online registration process. Prior to the recording, all the selected 155 vocalists, including well-known artists, were mentored and rehearsed, and an artist kit was shared with them. This contained lyrics, translations and pronunciation guides. It was imperative that the Re-recording of the National Anthem of Pakistan was rendered correctly while maintaining its historic sanctity and rich legacy. State-of-the-art digital technology was used to record multiple tracks and to complete the mixing and fusion to create clear, distinct, powerful vocal and instrumental versions. A colourful, kaleidoscopic video featuring the new version has also been produced by Num Films.
The Chairman of the Steering Committee of the Re-Recording of the National Anthem of Pakistan is Senator (r) Javed Jabbar. The 16 members comprise of 10 persons who served on a voluntary basis and 5 senior civil officials and one senior military official. The Secretary of Information Ministry is also a member. The audio sub-committee includes Arshad Mahmud, Brigadier Imran Naqvi (ISPR), Rohail Hyatt, Talha Ali Khushwaha, Ustad Nafees Ahmed, Layaqzada Layaq and Dr. Zulfiqar Qureishi. The video sub-committee’s convenor is Satish Anand.
All Those Participating
The choir and vocalists featured in this re-recording include:
Abdullah Qureshi, Abid Brohi, Abid Wilson, Adil Baloch, Ahmad Gul, Ahmed Jahanzeb, Ahsan Ali, Aizaz Sohail, Akbar Ali, Akbar Ali Khan, Akhtar Chanaal, Ali Hamdani, Ali Hamza, Alycia Dias, Amanullah Nasar, Anamta Saleem Sabri (Sabri Sisters), Aqdas Asif, Arif Khan, Arif Lohar, Arqam Khan, Asfar Hussain, Asim Baloch, Bakhtiar Khattak, Bilal Ali, Bilal Asvad, Bilal Saeed, Bisma Abdullah, Dr. Essa Kakar, Essa Khajjak, Fakhir Mehmood, Fariha Pervez, Fozia Yasmeen (Manwa Sisters), Goher Mumtaz, Haider Ali, Hamayoon Khan, Hamza Tanveer, Haroon Shahid, Humaira Javed, Hussain Baksh, Iman Shahid, Irfan Ali Taj, Irfan Khan, Islam Habib, Jabar Abbas, Jana Nazareth, Jasim Haider, Jia Nauman, Junaid Javed, Karan Khan, Kashif Din, Kashif Zafar, Kehkashan Khan, Khalid Jahangir, Khurram Iqbal, Laila Khan, Lucky Khan, Maham Waqar, Maria Unera, Mehak Ali, Moez Mohamand, Naseer Afridi, Nasir Butt, Natasha Humera Ejaz, Nauman Lasharie, Niaz Balti, Nida Irtiza, Nimra Gilani, Nimra Rafiq, Nirmal Roy, Nirmala Maghani, Noman Asmet, Quaid Ahmed, Rabia Nazar, Rachel Johnson, Rafia Ali, Rahim Khan, Raisa Raisani, Rameez Mukhtar, Razia Abrar, Rizwan Anwar, Saba Noreen (Manwa Sisters), Sadiq Hussain, Sahir Ali Bagga, Sajjad Gohar, Salman Paras, Saman Areej (Sabri Sisters), Sana Tajik, Sanwal Esakhelvi, Sardar Amar, Sehar Gul Khan, Shahab Hussain, Shahmir Quidwai, Shaina Johnson, Shamu Bai, Shaukat Faqeer, Sherry Raza, Shuja Haider, Sibtain Khalid, Sidra Kanwal, Sitara Younas, Sumraan Shafique, Sunny Sam, Tahir Feroz, Taj Mastani, Tehmina Tariq (Gospel Singer), Tina Sani, Umair Jaswal, Urooj Fatima, Usman Withd, Vishnu, Wajahat Aalmi, Wajiha Naqvi, Wali Ullah Farooqi, Yamsa Noor, Yashwa Ayub, Yasir Khan Milzai, Zara Madani, Zarish Kaleem, Zeb Bangash, Zeek Afridi, Zeeshan Ali, Zille Huma (Manwa Sisters), Zoha Zuberi, Zohaib Zaman, and Zubin Ernest (Gospel Singer).
The choir comprising artists from the National Academy of Performing Arts included:
Ahsan Sheikh, Aleeza Fatima, Angeli Sarfraz, Christina Nayamat, Cynthia Rose, Elisha William, Fahad Maqsood, Hassan Mirza, Hiba Asim, Julian Qaiser, Khadeeja Imtiaz, Komal Soomro, Mahnoor Sahar, Muhammad Khizar Rizvi, Muhammad Minaam, Myron Jasper, Nasfa Nizar, Natasha Sharif, Neha Fahim Khan, Nigel, Obaid Ahmed Siddique, Rimsha Masud Qureshi, Sajar Nafees, Sameer Hamza, Simal Nafees, Syed Rizwan Mehdi, Tabita J Nasim, Usama Anwer, Yashwa John, and Zeeshan Zafar.