Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam, a Sanskrit shloka, means “the world is one family.” For centuries, the human spirit has been transcending literal and figurative borders to survive and thrive. Inspired by the confluence of cultures this brings, Delhi to Damascus— both the touring project and the HUM Ensemble’s debut album— is a celebration of the shared history between India and the Middle East. These countries were major trade centers of the legendary Silk Road and flourished with a vibrant cultural, musical and linguistic exchange, exemplified by their common Sufi music tradition and the ancient Indo-Iranian and Indo-European Sanskrit script.
A collaboration between Indian Classical/Semi-Classical and Middle-Eastern music, Delhi to Damascus concerts feature some of the most iconic instruments of these countries. The eclectic and soulful repertoire, a mix of new compositions and arrangements, draws from traditional Indian ragas, melodic Arabic maqams, philosophical Sufi poems, pulsating folk grooves, and lyrical thumri. Its transcendental music, at times foreign and others familiar, engages differences only to overcome them, and takes us on a mesmerizing journey of new beginnings, exquisite poetry, faith, romantic yearning, and divinity.
An earnest quest to start a dialogue and spark compassion, Delhi to Damascus is a musical invitation to a spiritual odyssey, inspired by the spirit of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam—the beautiful ideal of inclusion, empathy, and global community.