LAHORE: August 13 marks the death anniversary of one of the most iconic figures in the history of Pakistani music, Nazia Hassan.
Born on April 3, 1965, the “Queen of Pop”, as she was called, started her career at the age of 10 as a child artist. She rose to prominence through the popular Pakistan Television (PTV) program Sung Sung.
Hassan made her singing debut with the song Aap Jaisa Koi, from, the Bollywood film Qurbani (1980). Her debut album, Disco Deewane (1981), charted in fourteen countries worldwide and became the best-selling Asian pop record at the time.
Hasan enjoyed widespread popularity across South and Southeast Asia. She, along with her brother Zoheb Hassan, went on to sell over 65 million records worldwide. Her English language single Dreamer Deewane made her the first Pakistani singer to make it to the British musical charts.
She received numerous national and international awards, and became the first Pakistani artist to win the Filmfare Award, one of the prominent Indian film awards, at a young age of 15 and remains the youngest recipient of the award to date.
Hassan was also a recipient of Pakistan’s highest civilian award, Pride of Performance.
In addition to singing in films, Hassan was also a philanthropist and was appointed by UNICEF as its cultural ambassador in 1991. Her last album, Camera Camera (1992), was part of a campaign against drugs.
Hassan passed away on August 13, 2000, in London at the young age of 35, following a prolonged battle with lung cancer.