Its a sheer delight hearing Seema Bhardwaj

Seema 1









Kersi Meher-Homji was entranced with Seema Bhardwaj’s melodic voice

Recently I was at the Mukesh ”“ Mohammed Rafi Mehfil presented by Vinod Rajput. As detailed in my previous story, it made me feel very nostalgic listening to old melodies sung by Vinod, Seema Bhardwaj and Kedar Pagaddinnimath.

I was entranced by the first song Ek pyaar ka naghma hai the attractive Seema rendered till her finalé, the Punjabi toe-tapperBolda Banere Utte Kaan. She had that certain allure as I sang along with her (in whisper, of course!) Lag jaa gale, Abhi naa jao chhod kar, Bahut Shukriya badi meherbani, Isharo Isharon mein dil and Uden jab jab zulphen teri. Some of the songs were sung solo by her, others as duet with Vinod.

I had the pleasure of interviewing her after the Mehfil.

At what age did you first start singing? Was there music in your family? Were you taught music or you are a natural singer ”“ a badi meherbani bahut shukriya from the Almighty?

Seema: “I started off early and gave my first stage performance at the age of 12, where I was the winner. My mother was a language teacher but she was known also for her singing. That is why music runs in my blood, thanks to my genes. My elder sisters Manju and Anju are also renowned folk singers in Himachal Pradesh.   I feel blessed to be born in such a talented family, where our parents always encouraged and motivated us to follow our dreams.”

Your gurus, your inspiration, your favourite singers?

“My music gurus were Shree Prem Prakash Nihalta ji (Shimla) and Late Shri Brij Lal Bhardwaj Ji (Mandi), both renowned vocalist of Himachal Pradesh. But my biggest achievement has been getting the guidance and training from India’s legendary vocalist Dr. Shyamala G. Bhave in Bangalore. She has been a great inspiration and guiding factor in my singing and in my life. I also have Masters in Indian Classical Vocal Music degree from Punjab University and Sangeet Visharad from Pracheen Kala Kendra. My main forte in singing is folk music, Ghazals, Punjabi, Sufi and Bollywood.”

In which part of India did you grow up? When did you arrive in Sydney?

“I grew up in a small town Sunder Nagar in Himachal Pradesh and moved  to Sydney in 2011.”

Your career highlights?

“Currently I am running a music academy at my home where my students also get opportunities to perform on stage. Apart from this I also work as a Hindi teacher at Hindi School and as a Child Care educator part time.

“During my career in India, I worked as an approved folk singer of All India Radio, Shimla, and music teacher for various Schools and NZCC Chandigarh. I have actively followed my passion by presenting folk music of Himachal  all over the country.  I have the privilege to perform in front of famous personalities of India like ex President Late Dr. A.P.J. Kalam, Smt Sonia Gandhi and various Ministers of India. I also got the opportunity to share the stage with famous and talented singers like Mika Singh, Harbhajan Mann and Jasbir Jassi and received accolades for my performances. My favourite singers are Lata ji, Ghulam Ali Ji, Abida Parveen Ji and Sonu Nigam to name a few.”

Your musical highlights?

“I have been actively performing and promoting Indian music. My main performances have been at Holi Mahotsav at Darling Harbour, INDAUS Australian Indian Republic Day, Heritage of India, R.D.Burman Night, Sitaro Ki Sham, Sai Bhajan Sandhyas and many more.”

Your ambition?

“As Indian Culture includes a treasure of a variety of folk songs and dances, therefore  my ambition is to form a Music Room for all ages where the students can learn Indian Classical and Folk Music as well.”

Your family?

“On my home front, I have two little sons and a husband who has always given me unconditional love and support for my passion.”

Your most magical moment?

“Since long I have been a great admirer of the famous Wadali brothers. During their recent show in Sydney I got to meet them personally and shared some special moments with them.”

Anything else you would like to share with the readers of The Indian Down Under?

“As I continue my journey of promoting Indian and Himachali folk music, I would appeal to the readers of The Indian Down Under that they encourage local talent in any way they can.”

Shukriya Seema. May your musical journey take you to your chosen goal.



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