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Monitoring report
October 29, 2016

Saudi-born girl pursues music career in Pakistan

LAHORE: A Pakistani-descent girl born and raised in Saudi Arabia has found her voice and freedom in Pakistan to pursue her music career, PRI’s The World website reported here.

Rutaba Yaqub, singer-songwriter, moved from her home in Saudi Arabia to Pakistan six years ago to study computer engineering. She is in Lahore where she started singing in public at her university.

For musician Rutaba Yaqub, Pakistan is a place where she feels free. She has been able to pursue her dream to be a recording artist.

At just age 19, Yaqub was discovered by music producer and mentor Xulfi — imagine Simon Cowell, except nicer. She started as a backing vocalist for Xulfi’s television music series.

Then she started recording her own music.

According to the website: “I knew that I could sing, but I never thought I’d be taking it forward as a career because I’ve come from a very conservative place. It’s been frowned upon, being in showbiz,” Yaqub explains.

Working on one of the country’s most popular TV shows got her exposure.

Rutaba said the inspiration came from her desire to escape when her family put pressure on her to move back to Saudi Arabia after she finished her degree in computer engineering.

She was desperate to stay in Pakistan.

“I knew that I wouldn’t be able to pursue my music in Saudi Arabia, and I wouldn’t be able to live as freely as and independently as I do in Pakistan. So that was the inspiration behind the EP — because I just wanted to escape that prison-like feeling.”

She was able to convince her parents to let her stay in Pakistan and pursue music.

She is living in Pakistan happily.

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