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Negeri Sembilan arts and culture group compose unique Hari Raya Song

Hari Raya Wish 2020 by Unique Arts Culture & Heritage Malaysia

SEREMBAN, May 25 — The restrictions under the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) has encouraged a group of arts and culture activists to compose a Hari Raya song with unique lyrics and music composition.

Negeri Sembilan Unique Arts, Culture, and Heritage Malaysia (UACHM) Artistic director, V. Savithri said the constraints in visiting her Muslim friends during the Adilfitri celebration this year had inspired her to compose a song.

“Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic sweeping the country, there are many things we cannot do as usual, so it inspired me to compose the song straight from the heart for not being able to celebrate Hari Raya with my friends like before. 

“We took the melody from a Hindi film titled ‘Bhai Bhai’ (brothers) released in 1956 but gave a new breath to the tune by using Indian musical instruments to maintain our unity as Malaysians.

“After we uploaded (our song) on our Facebook last Sunday, we never thought it would go viral and received various positive comments from people of all walks of life,” she told Bernama when met here today.

Commenting further, Savithri, 53, said the Hari Raya video involved her four children and another family member, M. Abisheg, who is also another Artistic director of the UACHM.

“The song’s lyrics also include four-lines of poetry which is Rindu Dengan sahabat (missing friends), Tak Dapat Berjabat (cannot shake hands), Walaupun tak ada ketupat (Although there is no ketupat), and Kita tetap sepakat (We are always together), which is the attraction of the song,” she added.

Meanwhile, Abisheg said the song took almost two days to be completed and used several instruments such as ‘tabla’ (small drums), ‘mridangam’ (barrel-shaped double-headed drum) including a bass guitar.

“Almost every year, we cover Hari Raya songs and prior to this, we used the existing songs and sang the again. But this time, we composed new music from an old Hindi song,” he said.

He added each song or dance would always focus on the concept of unity.

The 23-second video was shared and received thousands of positive responses from netizens.

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