Melody, mood and passion all found a very articulate expression in the mellifluous voice of Begum Parveen Sultana at the musical concert, Musical Odyssey.
It was for the first time that the couple-Ustad Dilshad Khan and the Begum made their appearance in Dubai, providing a rare treat for connoisseurs of Indian classical music.
Eloquently introduced to the audience by compere A.G. Chini in his characteristic witty style, the evening began with the Begum rendering a pure khayal in Raag Maru Bihaag, taking the listeners through the delicate intricacies, highs and lows of the raaga with the effortless spontaneity of a maestro.
Known to have a range of three and half octave, the lady did not disappoint her fans as she easily moved from the lowest notes to the highest in moments, showing her absolute command over the raaga and the range.
The Mishra Paahari thumri, sung next, was an absolute delight, meandering like a mountain stream through the notes and bringing the same kind of freshness to the evening. The Meera Bhajan sung next simply gave her fans yet another reaffirmation of the variety of genres she sings in.
The second half of the show was dominated with jugalbandis.
Her guru and husband Ustad Dilshad Khan sang Raag Yaman, demonstrating his erudition over the raaga. One of the most beautiful pieces of the evening was the taraana jugalbandi they sang in Raag Maruha Maand.
The audience was completely enthralled with the unusual rendition. Next, the couple sang on request Raaga Rageshwari, a beautiful composition that once again demonstrated how completely at ease they were with their creative energies.
The programme had a fitting finale with a powerful rendition of Bhavaani, Dayaani in Raag Bhairavi.
A couple completely dedicated to pure music, the two expressed joy and surpise at finding a responsive and appreciative audience, something they hadn't expected in Dubai.
For most of the members of the audience, the evening delivered more than what they expected.