Since then, The Ismaili TV has streamed 24 hours a day, seven days a week, has had over two million views and has aired thousands of hours of programming, including health, fitness, and wellness sessions, children’s activities, webinars, recipes, tutorials, performances, lectures, and feature films from The Ismaili archives. The Ismaili TV has supported the Jamat in enriching their minds and bodies, engaging more with their families, focusing on faith, and coming together as a global Jamat, strengthening our sense of community.
Farah Nasser, a news anchor in Canada, expressed awe that The Ismaili TV was able to come together during such a tumultuous time.
“I work in this industry … I don’t know how it was possible to get things together so quickly at the exact moment that the need was so great,” Farah said. “Your tireless volunteerism, your passion, your professionalism … you implemented all of that into this much needed tool of communication.”
In addition to its regular programming, The Ismaili TV has hosted memorable events including an exclusive Salim-Sulaiman concert, and celebrations of Eid ul-Fitr and Imamat Day.
The virtual Salim-Sulaiman concert, titled “From Our Home to Yours”, featured the musicians performing from their homes while observing physical distancing protocols. The concert was held in support of the AKDN’s Global Pandemic Relief Fund and shone a light on the work being done by Imamat institutions around the world in response to the pandemic.
The following week, The Ismaili TV presented the Shukrana Concert to coincide with the observance of Eid ul-Fitr. The non-stop musical extravaganza featured over 70 talented Ismaili performers and 20 hours of original content over the course of two days.
“The Ismaili TV has taken the tradition of music, arts, and cultural activities to the next level,” said Asif Noorani from Pakistan.
In an article about how Muslims around the world were celebrating Eid during the pandemic, Newsweek acknowledged The Ismaili TV’s efforts in helping the Jamat observe Eid ul-Fitr, saying, "... the international Ismaili Muslim community's new online streaming channel … will mark the occasion with a two-day concert by Ismaili musicians."
On the occasion of Imamat Day, The Ismaili TV presented a three-day programme featuring devotional expressions, archival footage, a new film about the Ismaili Imamat, and a music festival.
Farah Mitha, who performed during both the Shukrana Concert and Imamat Day programme, expressed her gratitude to The Ismaili TV team “for creating such a beautiful and cordial platform for us artists and creatives to be able to share our work with the global Jamat.”
In addition to featuring internationally-known musicians and celebrating festivals, The Ismaili TV has featured other high-profile programmes such as the world premiere of Close to Home: Al-Khimyah, a film written and directed by Prince Aly Muhammad, which explores the work of the Aga Khan Trust for Culture in Cairo, as well as a special lecture with Deepak Chopra titled ‘The Future of Leadership and Wellbeing’.
In surveys offered after the Shukrana Concert and Imamat Day programming, over 80% of respondents said that The Ismaili TV makes them feel more connected to the Global Jamat. Similarly, over 80% said that they want The Ismaili TV to continue forever.
Zarifmo Aslamshoyeva, who continued to work throughout the pandemic at the CNN Center in Atlanta, echoes these sentiments.
“From the soulful songs and dances, to the ancient poetry of our Ismaili Pirs, to the interviews with our knowledgeable Ismaili professors and doctors and, of course, the cute and sweet performances of our Ismaili kids, it all all touches my heart and soothes my soul,” Zarifmo said. “Never before have I felt this attached to a TV and never in my wildest dreams did I imagine feeling this close to our Jamat, to everyone near and far, while in my living room.”
The Ismaili TV has done the same for Ali Rahim from Germany, who said, “I have felt closer to the global Jamat now and it’s amazing, especially during this time, to be able to connect with people all over the world.”
In our history, the Ismaili community has overcome numerous challenges in various parts of the world. This global crisis presented an opportunity to come together and face the challenge with a sense of hope and resolve as One Jamat, together at home. A dedicated group of volunteers took hold of this opportunity to help bring The Ismaili TV to life and to inspire such hope and resolve.
As music artist Saba Rawjani from Canada said, “[The Ismaili TV team] did something that felt impossible. You brought so many people together, you made so many people smile, and you provided so much hope during a time when the world was completely uncertain, when the world was confused... You added certainty that there is hope, that there is happiness, and that there is joy always in every moment of life.”
To watch The Ismaili TV, visit the.ismaili/tv or download The Ismaili app. A TV guide with upcoming programming in your timezone appears on The Ismaili TV page, below the video window. You will need an Internet connection to enjoy The Ismaili TV.
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