Qutub Festival in New Delhi – Celebrating Sufi Culture in New Delhi

New Delhi is a city that depicts two aspects of India that have become well known among travellers. On the one hand is the new modern face of India, which embraces consumerism with huge shopping malls and chic boutiques and on the other, is the older image which is one of culture and religion. In New Delhi the new and old India exist side by side with travellers being able to enjoy the best of both worlds.
India is a cultural melting pot due to the various ethnicities that call it home; it is also an intrinsically creative place. Both of these factors have contributed to this country being able to create some of the finest music and dance styles in the region. The Qutub Festival which is a three day long festival of traditional Indian dance and music is held in November of each year. It is held amidst the backdrop of the Qutub Minaret which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This free standing tower is the largest minaret in India and is constructed on marble and red sandstone.
The construction of this minaret was commissioned in 1192 by a Turkic King who ruled over North Western India with Delhi being his capital. The tower is the centrepiece of a complex of ancient buildings of which only the ruins can be seen today.
The Qutub Music Festival which is conducted at this backdrop of history and art, sees the participation of internationally acclaimed Indian artistes. Much of the music and dance is centred on Sufi tradition, which is a liberal sect of Islam that encourages spiritual liberation through art. Qawwali is the best known style of Sufi music and has a huge following in Pakistan and India; the songs and music of this style of music is written as a devotion to the religion.
Solo Sufi performances also speak of love and romance; these songs are sometimes accompanied by traditional drummers. The Qutub Festival is an interesting event that can be witnessed by those staying at luxury hotels in Delhi. Among the 5 star hotels in Delhi establishments such as The Surya New Delhi is popular among tourists.

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