Concerts

To see an overview of all concerts please go to Agenda I Concerts.

For event planning or otherwise here is an overview of the different types of concerts that you can book .

If you want to book a concert; check our options:

Classical Indian Concerts

Classical Concerts are usually Raga performances. At this time we are offering mainly Sitar performances. This can involve up to 3 or 4 artists playing along side each other. (A single performer, say on Sitar, is usally the least costly option.) The occasion is formal. Usually one or two ragas may be performed. Traditionally a raga performance can last through a whole afternoon or if it is a nightime performance until dawn. However for most western scheduals a concert will last for around two hours in total. A “Dhun” or folk tune that may often be added to a classical raga performance as an extra, to lighten up the ordiance after the main raga has been performed. The choice of Raga is often decided by the Artist at his or her choosing depending on their feelings, the mood of an audiance, the season and the time of day also is usually critical. Expect the following;

  • Sitar Instumental/or Harmonium with Vocalist
  • Tabla
  • Tanpuri/tanpura
  • (Vocal)

Indian Folk Concerts

Folk Concerts are generally not Raga performances although some ragas, such as Bhoopali, Vachaspati and Khamaj have a folk music roots. Folk music is often categorized as ”light classical music” . The performer will place emphasis on explicitly seking emotion from the audiance. There is no limit for involvment, however a folk concert will usually involve one or two lead artists. (A single performer, singing, whilst playing a Sitar or Harmonium, is usually the least costly option, however with more performers then it is better for experiencing different types of folk genres such as Bhajans.)

Folk concert occasions are informal, but can sometimes be very auspitious. Usually 5 or 6 folk songs are played in one concert, depending on the type. Expect to hear one or a few of the following of these types of folk songs in a full concert:

Bhajans: A Bhajan refers to any devotional song with a religious theme or spiritual ideas, specifically among Dharmic religions, in any language. The term bhajanam (Sanskrit: भजनम्) means reverence and originates from the root word bhaj (Sanskrit: भज्), which means to revere, as in ‘Bhaja Govindam’ (Revere Govinda)The term bhajana also means sharing. The term bhajan is also commonly used to refer a group event, with one or more lead singers, accompanied with music, and sometimes dancing. Normally, bhajans are accompanied by percussion instruments such as tabladholak or a tambourine. Handheld small cymbals (kartals) are also commonly used to maintain the beat.

Dadras: These are folk songs sung in a rhythm of a six beat cycle. The peculiarity of Dadra genre is that the Sthayi (or main compositional element or poetic line within the song) is in Braj Bhasha (A West Hindi, Hindu-Language) while the Antara (the ending, final phrazes) are sometimes in Urdu. ( The main language of Muslim-Pakistan). It is one of the illustrations of how cultures have amalgamated and coexisted in Indian classical music.

A Thumri:   The term “thumri” is derived from the Hindi verb thumuknaa, which means “to walk with a dancing gait in such a way that the ankle-bells tinkle.” The form is, thus, connected with dance, dramatic gestures, mild eroticism, evocative love poetry, especially from Uttar Pradesh, typical of Varanasi.

Ghazals: The ghazal is a form of amatory poem or ode, originating in Arabic poetry.  Ghazals often deal with topics of spiritual and romantic love and may be understood as a poetic expression of both the pain of loss or separation from the beloved and the beauty of love in spite of that pain.

Chaiti: are semi-classical songs, sung in the month of Chait (mid March/April on the Hindu Calendar). The songs typically have the name of Lord Rama and are traditionally sung in the villages and towns of Uttar Pradesh: around Varanasi. There are many famous folk song genres that come from this same area around Varanasi.

A Dhun: is a light instrumental piece, typically Hindustani and classical in nature. Although based on a raga it is often chosen because of its folk associations, such as a variation of Bhoopali and Khamaj and some south Indian Ragas which are typically chosen as alreasdy being related to folk music. Often bollywood film scores are also played. A Dhun is freely interpreted so doesnt need to neccessarily follow strict rules.

  • Harmonium
  • Sitar
  • Tabla/ or oher percussion
  • Bells and Hand Chimes
  • Tanpuri/Tanpura
  • Vocals, multiple, sometimes with Amplification
  • Shruti box
  • Guitars and other instruments

Mantra Concerts

Mantras, which are the repeated phraze or words sung, traditionally 108 times, are said to have specific meanings and some have spiritual and magic meditative powers. Our Mantra Concerts involve traditional practices and rituals found from those singing in the temples and homes in perhaps the most spiritual center of India; Varanasi, formally Banares. We pronounce the Mantra in oridginal Sandskrit as it would be pronounced in India. Science does actually prove that repeating a mantra for a reasonably long period of time, for 5 minutes or more, calms the mind and can heal mental and bodily related illnesses, so we think it is important to be as authentic as possible and get it right.

The most famous basic Mantra is Aum, (Om). Concerts usually begin with the basics and Aum is usually the starting point. Participant are reminded how Aum should or can be approached so to gain its best power within the meditation.  An Examples of longer mantras we use include the Gayatri Mantra which is especially Vedi in nature and the Genesh Mantras and the Genesha Shokla. Hinduizm is still mostly recognised as the oldest religioon still pracrticed today. Other Mantras will include the Hare Krishna mantraOm Namah Shivaya, Om Namo Bhagavate, Twameva Mata and many others.

Although Mantras without any actual linguistic meaning are still considered to be musically uplifting and spiritually meaningful, the traditional mantras are seen as more essential.

  • Vocal
  • Tanpuri/Tanpura
  • Harmonium
  • Sitar
  • Guitar
  • Tabla and percussion/ various

(Indian) Fusion, Improvisation Concerts

We compose and jam regularly with Indian instruments. Our influences are wide but circle around classics influences, such as: Anoushkar Shankar, Niladri Kumar, The Raga Rock of Ananda Shankar, and the Jazz influences of Miles Davis and John McLaughlin. (Perhaps a little notion also from pop bands like Cornershop). The key for good Indian Music fusion is the quality of participants and good listeners. Improvisation structures are may sometimes be directed, and revolve around raga type format structure. Typically and concert we begin slow and in a meditation, to then gently speed up through an Alap, perhaps to a Jor, and then Jalla. Finishing is with a fast Jalla and with something like a “T High”. However most of the fun of a fusion concert is that the musicians do not know what will happen until the last note is played.

  • Sitar
  • Vocal
  • Drums, various
  • Sarangi – arranged on request
  • Most rock Instruments can be arranged on request.
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