The Golden Jubilee Band was formally launched in Shimshal Valley, Gojal, on 21st March, the Persian calendar new year day! The newly launched pipe band performed on 1st and 2ndApril in Shimshal and accolades from the public, for entertaining them well.
The journey from Dadang, Dorya, Surinay, Sitor and Damal to Chanters, Bagpipes and drums is also the story of a mountain community’s collective efforts to modernize and move towards a different future.
The idea was first introduced by the youth of Shimshal’s Aminabad sub-village, during a cultural festival.
They used mundane tools, like water canisters, empty tins and traditional Surinays.
The “band” was able to win the interest and appreciation of the people of Shimshal Valley. The start may have been modest, the dream grew bigger with the passage of time and different people came together to make Shimshal’s own pipe band a reality.
The experienced member of Silver Jubilee Band Gulmit were approached for the purpose of training. Senior trainers from the Silver Jubilee Band, Gulmit voluntarily conducted training sessions for the future pipe band of Shimshal Valley, between January 2010 and March 2011.
Shimshal’s Golden Jubilee Band is the third of its kind in Gojal Valley, upper Hunza. Ghulkin village has also formed its own pipe band.
Sherbaz Nadir Shah was unanimously elected Captain of the Shimshal Golden Jubilee Band and Aziz Khan as Vice Captain. Hidayat Karim is the Head Piper, Muhammad Nayab and Jamil Khan are Head Drummers and Wazir Baig is the band’s spokesperson!
Purchasing equipments for the Golden Jubilee Band was not a very easy task. Due to financial constraints and lack of skilled human capital, the idea of band formation took a lot of time. However, due to keen interest of Silver Jubilee Band Gulmit and fund-raising
efforts of Ghulam Shah, a travel guide from Shimshal, the challenges were overcome without much difficulty. Ghulam Shah was able to to raise funds for the band through a foreign donor, Ms. Elisabeth Oberli, an admirer of Shimshal Valley.
The Golden Jubilee Pipe Band of Shimshal, apart from being a source of healthy entertainment for the villagers, has also provided the youth with creative and healthy opportunities to learn new skills and celebrate life, as it is!
But the highly conscious people of Shimshal are not going to leave their traditional musical instruments. What they are trying to achieve is a balance between the traditional and the modern. A tough, but intelligent, choice!