Pakistan & India
The Dosti Music Project brings together a group of musicians from Pakistan, India, and the U.S. for a month-long residency and tour. An initiative of the U.S. Embassy in Pakistan, produced by Bang on a Can’s Found Sound Nation, Dosti invites a group of Pakistani, Indian, and U.S. musicians from a wide variety of traditions, ranging from Sufi singing to beatmaking to avant garde jazz, to collaboratively write, record, and perform original music, reinvent traditional music, and develop initiatives that will make a positive impact on communities locally and internationally. Dosti, which means friendship in both Urdu and Hindi, seeks to transcend political and cultural barriers through cross-cultural musical collaboration.
Through the process of sharing, listening, and collaborating, the Dosti musician delegates model a creative, cooperative, and egalitarian cultural exchange between India, Pakistan, and the United States – providing a positive template for cross-national discourse and people-to-people diplomacy. By providing musicians from India and Pakistan the infrastructure for collaboration and integration, Dosti creates a unique opportunity to reconnect musical traditions and re-link the politically fractured South Asian subcontinent. By facilitating the project in the U.S. and including American musicians, the U.S. participates as capacity-builders and as equal partners, establishing a model of cultural interaction that can positively impact diplomatic and political discourses.
The cultures of India and Pakistan are deeply interconnected, yet creating opportunities for people-to-people contact can be challenging. Still, music has always served as a binding force in South Asia: Bollywood is wildly popular on both sides of the border, just as ghazal singers attract audiences in both countries and across the region. Indians and Pakistanis have an immense shared cultural experience upon which to build new collaborations – the Dosti Music Project provides a space for that to happen.