Meet Nishi Singh: The multi-tasking singer, social worker, painter
Nishi Singh has not only established herself as a popular singer, she is a good painter also. During lockdown, she reached out to the needy and helpless through her NGO NAAD Foundation
A man can never change a destiny designed by God. Here comes such an innate talent who has scaled dizzying heights breaking the glass ceiling. The multitasking Nishi Singh was brought up in a family where her father was an IAS officer, she was deeply inspired by him, she sat for UPSC (prelims) and even passed but destiny had something else designed for her. She took to music like a duck to water.
Though her genre is romantic and love-drenched movie songs yet she knows the art of Hindustani classical music ranging from raaga, bandish, thumri to khayaal like the back of her hand, she is a prolific singer of ghazal gayan as well.
She strongly believes the guru-shishya and ustaad-shagird parampara.
Of late, Nishi Singh has cut a couple of albums that brought her great popularity for the peppy and foot-tapping numbers she sang with great panache in her mellifluous and silky voice
'Mera dil' and 'Soni Kudi' have been big hits in the recent past.
Singh hails from Uttar Pradesh, went to Delhi University's premium college LSR (Lady Sri Ram) then studied Law at Law Faculty main campus of the varsity. She honed her skills of singing at Gandharv Mahavidhalaya. A time came when her musical voyage entered a cul de sac; a lull descended and music took a back seat. After a long hiatus, she has resumed her journey and begun to stage concerts. When at leisure, she loves spending time jollying her room up, pruning and tending her lush and exotic flower- lined garden.
In trying times during lockdown, when pandemic had swallowed many livelihoods, a battery of good Samaritans stepped forward to help those who were left stranded without food and clothing. NAAD Foundation run by Nishi Singh is one that works for the underprivileged children and promotes culture and heritage. The Foundation went the extra mile helping the helpless during lockdown.
Nishi is a good painter too. Her painting of a balloon-selling boy with his poverty-hit eyes sunk in search of hunger has won her laurels. The painting of sparrows on the brink of extinction attracted many at the gallery. She is one regular at reputed exhibition galleries; her work of art particularly acrylic and oil paintings takes her overseas also. She prefers portraying a street urchin and street life of a messy metropolitan.
A conversation with her takes us to the journey this creative talent has gone through:
When did you discover a singer in you?
This happened when I was going to write my first boards. I sang in the school choir.
Where did you get formal training?
I had my basic training from Gandharva Mahavidyalay. Pt Jwala Prasad in fact was my guru who mentored me.
Which genre does your gayaki fall into?
I mostly sing Bollywood kind of tracks, light romantic songs, bhajans. I follow sugam sangeet. I feel equally comfortable with ghazal and sufi singing.
What’s your latest album coming out?
Well, there are a few projects in the pipeline but no title has been finalized so far.
Can you please elaborate on painting?
I am deeply in love with painting. It’s been there since my school days.
I love doing acrylic, paint canvas with water color and oil. I have participated in many group exhibitions and auctions. Painting real life situations is my forte. My paintings have featured in India Art Festivals in Delhi and Mumbai. Besides, many more prestigious exhibitions hosted by ICCR also showcased my work.
How does Naad Foundation work?
It is all about promoting art, culture and heritage. NAAD provides the poor and deprived kids with education. It has adopted as many as 40 children and going to adopt a village in Uttarakhand. When the country was placed under lockdown, the Foundation distributed 10 tonnes of dry ration, PPE kits, sanitizers and masks to thousands of the needy.
Do you find it difficult striking a balance between you and your family?
No. I manage time in accordance with priority. I avoid things that invade my space. My family is my first preference and the rest comes later
Who is your favourite playback singer(s)?
I immensely adore Lata Mangeshkar and Asha Bhosle ji and Mohammad Rafi sahib. Shreya Ghoshal and Sonu Nigam are also my favourites.