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Raga Rang Once Again Takes Us By Storm!

Aneesha Karody
05/04/2017

Rāga Rang Once Again Takes Us By Storm!

Suron ki bahaar,
Taal ki jhankar, Raagon ki leher,
Mil kar layi tarang
Yahi hai Rāga Rang!

The melodious rendition brought by the artists was truly a treat to the ears, transcending the packed audience into the enchanting world of music. The Jam session by the instrumentalists was exhilarating, and each performance by every artist was magnificent.

Led by Shekhar Shastri, the ensemble had some of the most notable names from both New England as well as from India. Classical stalwarts like Shuchita Rao and Aditya Rohit were joined by prominent Bollywood singers like Meena Sundaram, Sankar Gangaikondan, Vijay Kumar, and Shubhra Chandra. The most notable addition was Dr. Subhadra Desai. The mellifluous voice of this distinguished researcher-scholar-musician enthralled the audience with the improvisations of Khyal in Raga Megh and excited the listener by capturing the sweet essence of love with the beautiful Raga Kafi tappa.

Feet were sent tapping and hands followed the rhythm or the taal of the tabla as the accomplished tabla player Nitin Mitta brought life to every beat, every song and every raag played that evening. He was perfectly complimented by the star-studded orchestra, which included Shyam Vai, Phil Kaplan, Sujeet Phanse, Ravi Torvi, Hiral Parikh, Gaurishankar Chandrashekhar, and Abhilash Mehta.

As promised, the concert took the audience, artists and novices alike through a five-step journey allowing us to emerge from our current state to one from which we can appreciate music at a deeper level. A place in which we began to speak the language of music and transcended to our improved selves.

Meru Education Foundation has always brought us programs that not just inform but also entertain. The idea of uncovering the rasa, or aesthetic bliss that then helps one find transformative experiences. Whether through their Natyashastra workshop or through the many editions of Rāga Rang, Meru continues to enrich our cultural experiences.

Here is what some people from the audience had to say about Rāga Rang:

“It was simply marvelous, a truly amazing performance,” remarked classical dancer and teacher, Mouli Pal.

Well-known community leader and supporter of the arts, Mr. Puran Dang said, “Exceptional!  It was a show to remember; best exposition of our heritage and culture.”

“The effort, creativity, growing family of performers, all combined to make a great evening,” said philanthropist and entrepreneur Geeta Aiyer of Cambridge.

I caught up with Shekhar Shastri, the creative director of Meru and the producer of Rāga-Rang, to congratulate him and this is what he had to say:

“We are touched by the overwhelming audience response to Rāga-Rang over the years. Further vindication that Indian classical music is the immortal fountain of bliss,”

Thank you Meru Education Foundation for bringing us this extraordinary experience!!

 


Photography: Duan Wang

(Aneesha Karody is the founder and event planner of TaranaOM creations, an event management company. Online at taranaomcreations.com. )

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