Making Indian classical music

2017-08-08 06:01
Indian classic musicians, Vijay Ghate and Niladri Kumar, played in Cape Town on Friday 28 August.

Indian classic musicians, Vijay Ghate and Niladri Kumar, played in Cape Town on Friday 28 August.

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Nisaar Pangarker from the Inner Circle Entertainment is on a mission to promote Indian classical music in South Africa.

He says though this genre of music has been played for over 60 years outside India, South Africa has not yet fully adapted to it.

“There are many interventions [needed] such as master classes, talks, and workshops which will improve the understanding of the music. There are no radio stations which regularly play this genre of music in South Africa yet and we are working on that. Radio also has an important role to play.”

Pangarker has recently brought two Indian artists – sitar player Niladri Kumar along with tabla player Vijay Ghate – to South Africa in an attempt to introduce the genre to this audience. They played at the Baxter Concert Hall in Cape Town on Saturday 29 July and at The Lyric Theatre in Johannesburg on Sunday 30 July.

He says the response was positive and the artists managed to get through to the hearts of many. He says the audience was multi-racial with mostly people who love jazz music, which made it easy for them to blend in with the Indian classical.

“Indian classic music is so close to jazz and therefore there is a natural audience here who can relate to the music. The audience was quite phenomenal. It is quite unusual to see just two musicians performing on stage and having such a great impact.”

He says the unique thing about this genre is that musicians generally are composing while they are performing on stage.

“What you hear in a concert today, you may never hear again,” says Pangarker.

The artists say they enjoyed playing their music in South Africa and they appreciated the response they got from the audience. Ghate says: “It is always exciting playing in South Africa. The audience is also very responsive and there was no difference with this past concert.”

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