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Nayyara Noor

One of Pakistan’s greatest singers, renowned as the Nightingale of Pakistan, Nayyara Noor, died after a brief illness in Karachi on August 22, at the age of 71.

Nayyara Noor was born in November 1950 in Guwahati, Assam in India, where she spent her early childhood before her family relocated to Karachi. She went to the prestigious National College of Arts in Lahore, where her singing talent was discovered, and in the late 60s she had made her debut on state television.

In a versatile career full of iconic songs, she will forever be remembered for her renditions of work by Pakistan’s famous revolutionary poet Faiz Ahmed Faiz – music released in a 1976 compilation called Nayyara Sings Faiz.

She also sang some of Pakistan’s most memorable patriotic tunes, including Sohni Dharti, Watan Ki Mitti Gawah Rehna as well as countless songs for Pakistani films and dramas. In a career spanning over four decades, Noor won plenty of accolades including the Nigar Award in 1973 for best playback singer (Gharana). She was also given the Pride of Performance award by the government in 2006 for her contributions to the arts.

She eventually retired from singing in 2012. She was married to actor Shehryar Zaidi and was the mother of Naad-e-Ali Zaidi and Jaffer Zaidi, both talented musicians and singers in their own right.

The news of her demise resulted in condolence messages shared by dignitaries and artists on social media:

May her soul ret in peace (Ameen).

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