I am heart-broken to know of the untimely and sudden demise of Trivandrum R. Vaidyanathan sir. He was the staff on duty at my very first radio broadcast at AIR. Such a gentle and genuine soul, with only good-will towards all. He was very keen to have me perform at several major venues in Kerala, and encouraged me always to carry the baton of the KVN bani. I cherish the long conversation we shared after my concert at Edapally Sangeetha Sadas this last April, where he clarified several of my doubts regarding some laya matters, including chaturashra tishram in pallavi singing. Long live his legacy through his disciples! My heartfelt condolences to his family and disciples.
Shanta Serbjeet Singh is no more
According to a PTI news report, Shanta Serbjeet Singh, veteran art critic and former vice chairperson of Sangeet Natak Akademi, passed away at New Delhi on 2 August. She was 81.
Shanta is survived by two sons, a daughter-in-law and a grandson.
Her cremation will be held at Lodhi Road crematorium at 12 noon today, 3 August.
Madras Youth Choir in Washington
“Music has no language barriers. Its just music, you could listen to it and feel it” just about sums up our experience in the recently concluded Serenade 2017 international Choir Music Festival in Washington DC. For us at Madras Youth Choir, it has been a wonderful learning and enriching experience as we showcased Indian Choral Music to international audiences. Interacting with 18 choir groups from 14 countries helped in the appreciation of a wonderful array of voices together with their enthusiasm and beauty in singing.
The festival was a cultural exchange as we interacted with Choir groups from different parts of the world - Zimbabwe, Bulgaria, Chicago , Northern Ireland, Latvia, Shanghai, Mongolia, Spain , India to name a few. Every culture has its tradition of songs, sounds, rhythms and folk tunes. There were several workshops conducted by the various Groups explaining the nuances of their music. Ramakrishna from MYC conducted 4 workshops including two for children where we also taught them a melody song in Bengali, which was received very well. Concerts were held at prestigious venues throughout the Washington metropolitan area. Listening to a wonderful array of voices from around the world marked with enthusiasm and beauty in singing was an enjoyable experience.
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Ustad Sayeeduddin Dagar passes away
Ustad Hussain Sayeeduddin Dagar, veteran maestro of the Dhrupad tradition of Hindustani music, died in a Pune hospital on 30 July 2017. He was 78 and had been ailing for some time. Sayeeduddin Dagar is survived by his wife and two sons, Nafeesuddin and Aneesuddin (dhrupad exponents). Affectionately called Sayeed Bhai, he was the youngest of the famous ‘Dagar Bandhu’ and had dedicated his life to keeping the dhrupad tradition alive.
Launch of Vishwashanti Sangeet Kala Academy
Lata Mangeshkar, Chairperson of the Vishwashanti Sangeet Foundation, announced the opening of Vishwashanti Sangeet Kala Academy--envisioned as India’s biggest gurukul--in Pune. The Gurukul aims to provide a platform for aspiring Hindustani classical musicians from across the country to learn from the best of gurus.
The institute is the vision of Prof. Dr. Vishwanath Karad, founder of MIT Institutes, and Founder-President of the Vishwashanti Sangeet Foundation. The Gurukul--built over a vast area of 70,000 sq. feet--offers state of the art facilities along with the supervision and guidance of renowned gurus. The faculty boasts of eminent musicians like Dr. N Rajam, Hariprasad Chaurasia, Ulhas Kashalkar, Hridaynath Mangeshkar, Suresh Talwalkar, Shama Bhate, Yogesh Samsi and Devaki Pandit.
Speaking on the occasion, Lata Mangeshkar said she was happy that the Academy was adopting the Gurukul system, as the venerated guru-sishya parampara has been the pride of Indian culture for centuries and has been instrumental in producing some of the finest artists in Indian classical music, dance and many other forms in the country.
The admission procedure begins on 1st June 2017, and the application form is available on the website www.mitvsf.com. Learning is free, but students will have to pay the residential and mess charges after their enrolment.