Aftab, Arooj

Arooj Aftab (c) Blythe Thomas

Arooj Aftab, born in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, raised in Lahore, Pakistan, moved to the U.S. at age 19. She studied jazz at Berklee College of Music, Boston, and has lived in New York since 2010. Aftab has released several solo albums, including “Vulture Prince” (New Amsterdam Records 2021). In 2023, she released an album in trio with Vijay Iyer and Shazad Ismaily, titled “Love in Exile” (Verve). In 2021, Aftab was nominated for Grammy Awards in the Best New Artist and Best Global Music Performance categories. She became the first Pakistani to win, taking home the 2021 award for Best Global Music Performance for her song “Mohabbat”.  In 2022, she was nominated again in the same category for her song “Udhero Na” featuring Anoushka Shankar.

Festival Content

POETRY TALK: Arooj Aftab

In This Desolate World, Breathe

Clubraum 7/5€ | Tickets

Arooj Aftab is a Grammy award winning singer, composer, and producer who works in various musical styles and idioms, including jazz, minimalism, and Urdu poetry. Arooj Aftab was born in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to Pakistani parents. Her family returned to Pakistan in the ’90s, where Aftab found inspiration in Lahore’s lush gardens, intricate architecture, and poetry.

She has been named one of NPR’s Top 100 composers, and has been featured on several best concerts lists, including The New York Times. Her Vulture Prince album was met with critical acclaim from The Guardian, Time Magazine, Pitchfork, Rolling Stone, The Los Angeles Times, and The New York Times. Aftab has performed at major international music festivals including Coachella, Glastonbury, Primavera Sound Barcelona, Roskilde Festival, and Montreal Jazz Festival. She has also performed at Performance Art Centers such as The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Lincoln Center for Performing Arts, and The Broad. Aftab is a 2023 United States Artists Fellow and a recipient of the Vilcek Prize for Creative Promise in Music.

Arooj Aftab will speak about her work and the relationship between words and music.

Moderation: Ralph Tharayil

Aftab, Arooj


Night Of Poetry

Großes Parkett | 14/9€ inkl. Anthologie Tickets


Weltklang – Night of Poetry is poesiefestival berlin’s prismatic and panoramic opening. Poets will read, sing, and perform in their source languages, demonstrating the full spectrum of contemporary poetry: its power, its diversity of approaches and styles. Just for the event, an anthology will be published in German and English so that audience members can read along with the poems presented onstage.


Aftab, AroojArai, TakakoBarskova, PolinaBrolaski, Julian TalamantezFabias, RadnaKandasamy, MeenaKunial, Zaffar