A woman with brown bobbed hair wears a black and green jacket with yellow flowers
Senior Program Director, New England Presenting & Touring, Center Stage

I'm so excited to watch Center StageSM artist Arieb Azhar perform this Tuesday, June 19 in Washington, DC, as he kicks off his month-long U.S. tour. Below, the singer-songwriter tells us where he creates his music. Also, watch a behind-the-scenes video of a jam session in his room in Pakistan!

When I was living in Zagreb, Croatia, we often used to gather in the basement of a close friend, Igor Bazmenjak, which had a pool-table and all manner of percussions, and used to end up jamming till the wee hours of the morning. Igor was a natural leader – a basketball coach, with an endless supply of energy, and sometimes after our jam at around 4 in the morning he used to mobilize us into going out to a school playground nearby and shooting some basketball.

About 7 years ago Igor left this world due to a brain stroke, and since then every time that I visit Zagreb, we still gather in his basement and play music together, and every time in that space the music still sounds magical.

In Islamabad, Pakistan, we often jam in my room and it usually turns into something interesting, especially when everyone starts playing on something, a guitar, percussion, harmonium or even pencils and glasses. Here’s a clip of a more normal rehearsal in my room: