It's been more than a decade since this Allahabad girl settled in the city of dreams, but she still finds it a bit intimidating to weave her way through crowds and traffic. However, says singer Shubha Mudgal, her love for the city has just increased. Shubha, who recently performed at a cultural heritage site in the city, talks to CS about Mumbai:

Who: Shubha Mudgal
What: Talks about her love for Mumbai

City of dreams
In all these years, I've learnt that Mumbai has its own set of challenges as well as high points. The city is an important centre for artistic activities. And, it is one of the best places for those pursuing music; it is a house for world music � from jazz to classical. For that matter, every aspect of Mumbai is different, yet has signs of unity. For instance, there are so many cultures that thrive in the city, but all of them look the part of one canvas. I like this quality the most and that is what attracts me to this city. It is probably one of those few cities where Diwali and Ramzan are celebrated with the same enthusiasm.

Concert culture
For over a century, Mumbai has been important for the growth of music in the country. That is the reason why many big artists from various small towns and even from abroad migrated to Mumbai and started performing as well as teaching here. And it is a delight to see that the city has matured in its understanding of different forms of music, not just Bollywood. Also, the concert culture that has rapidly grown has an added advantage to it; with the city's heritage sites opening up for concerts and cultural events, the glamour of these concerts has increased manifold. It is a bonanza for music lovers and an encouragement for performers.

Small town girl
I come from Allahabad and will always be a small town person. It is strange that even after having travelled the world, I still remain a small town girl. And no matter how many years I spend in Mumbai, I just can't get used to the traffic and crowd in the city. I feel lost when I see huge crowds coming towards me. But on the other hand, the liberal, generous, and accepting nature of the city is worth appreciating.

In the early 1980s, I came to Mumbai to perform at a show called Aaj Ke Kalakar. It was my first public performance outside Allahabad. My guru came to Mumbai and my mother and guru accompanied me on the stage. This was where I started my musical journey and so, this city will always hold a special place in my heart.