India’s new nightingale


One of the best-kept secrets in Indian music is gifted singer Mistu Bardhan.  

Her voice has been compared to legendary singer Lata Mangeshkar and most who have heard it would agree. Next month, the talented singer will make her UK stage debut at a con­cert headlined by Shafqat Amanat Ali at De Montfort Hall in Leicester on March 24 and Indig02 in London on March 25.  

I caught up with Mistu to talk about music, her forthcoming shows and being compared to the nightingale of India.  

How do you look back on your music journey?  

My journey has not been a simple journey of progress. There have been many ups and downs, and it is the choices I made at each of those times that have helped shape me as a singer.  

How much did The Golden Voice Of Lata Mangeshkar award mean to you?  

Well, it was a big surprise. Being the recipient of such a great honour made me very nervous.  

How do you feel when people compare your amazing voice to Lata Mangeshkar?  

When people compare me to a person I wor­ship, adore and have followed since my child­hood, it leaves me speechless. To be honest, she has been and is my strength, motivation and inspiration. She is the goddess of music and one of the greatest singers of all time. She is my god, my guru, my mother and everything else. All my singing efforts are my humble homage to her and to my audiences globally.  

You generate a lot of emotion in your voice. Where does that come from?  

When singing is your one and only habit, and a way of life, then emotions come straight from your heart and through your voice. I believe this is the only reason and rest is god’s wish.  

Do any songs affect you emotionally?  

Yes, of course, because music is full of emo­tions and there are many songs which make me very emotional.  

How much does performing live mean to you?  

Singing live in front of all the music lovers and pleasing them with songs that are so close to their hearts is one of the biggest joys for me, and each show is memorable in its own way.  

How much are you looking forward to your UK shows?  

I am really excited about my tour to the lovely and beautiful cities of the UK. I will be on stage for the first time in cities I have never per­formed earlier in. It is a humble tribute of ‘re­membering the past’ and to all music lovers who passionately love the songs sung by the golden voice of the millennium, the greatest of the great, Lata Mangeshkarji.  

What songs do you enjoy performing live?  

To be honest I love all the songs sung by Lataji – those have a special place in my heart.  

Today what inspires you?  

Music, music and music. It inspires me to a new awareness and a desire to entertain the whole world and spread the message of love, peace and forgiveness.  

Who would you love to sing a duet with?  

Actually I would love to sing with everyone, so naming any one person would not be justified.  

What kind of music do you enjoy listening to?  

Would it be pretentious if I say every single song sung by all the great legends of the past and the present? Their songs make me learn many intricacies of music.  

Why should we come to your upcoming live shows in the UK?  

Recording in the studio and performing live on stage are very different. Live shows directly connect you with your audiences. You can feel their emotions, appreciation and the love and respect they shower on you. In return the audi­ence gets a high-packed, pure entertainment show. It’s a win-win situation.  

Finally, why do you love music?  

I love music because it is what my life revolves around. Music makes my soul and heals my heart. It brings colour, joy and peace to my mind. I am so connected to it that I think that music is part of my existence, the only purpose of my life. Moreover, it teaches me to be uni­versal and philanthropic.  

Shafqat Amanat Ali and Mistu Bardhan play live at De Montfort Hall in Leicester on March 24 and Indig02 in London on March 25. Visit to find out more.