Percussion is a crucial element of music, adding rhythm, texture, and complexity to compositions. Certain rhythms and beats can create a feeling of excitement, while others may evoke a sense of calm or introspection. In Indian classical and folk traditions, percussion plays an important role in setting the tone and creating a foundation for other instruments and vocals to build upon.
Percussionists are often given more creative freedom to improvise and adapt to the other musicians around them. This creates a sense of spontaneity and excitement, as the musicians work together to create a unique and memorable performance. You will be seeing this kind of spontaneity and jugalbandi at the Mahindra Percussion Festival at Bengaluru’s Jay Mahal Palace on 18th March 2023.
The idea behind the Mahindra Group’s newest cultural initiative is to bring forth local and global street-style percussion music in an amiable setting and spark a mainstream cultural conversation around it. Expect interesting collaborations with ensembles from around the globe. Ranjit Barot – film composer, educator and percussionist for three decades – is the festival's curator. He says, “India is the rhythmic centre of the Universe. I’m thrilled to be able to present this aspect of our unique culture.”
Viveick Rajagopalan |
What to expect
Expect a diverse and dynamic range of percussion rhythms and melodies. Multi-percussionist A Shivamani has played the drums for several Kollywood and Bollywood films, including Rang De Basanti and Dil Se. Likewise, legendary Carnatic percussionist V. Selvaganesh is a leading kanjira player of his generation. The Chemmeen Band will showcase percussion rhythm alongside Aattam Kalasamithi, a popular Chenda percussion band from Kerala.
The trio of Pulse Conversation ft. Gino Banks, Vinayak Pol and Jai Row Kavi will deliver a dose of powerful percussive sounds. Viveick Rajagopalan's Ta Dhom Project by will blend Konnakol – vocal percussion derived from the sounds of Mridangam – and rap into a sound that respects its cultural origin while having an identity of its own.
Arto Tunçboyacıyan |
Among international artists are avant garde multi-instrumentalist Arto Tunçboyacıyan (of Armenian descent), Spanish percussionist Paquito Gonzalez as part of the Paquito Ensemble ft. Spanish guitarist Jose Quevedo “Bolita” and Flamenco dancer Antonia Molina “El Choro”. Arto has won the 2011 Grammy award for Best New Age Album. It was for 'Miho: Journey to the Mountain,' an album he made with Paul Winter.
This festival is poised to be not just a showcase of individual talent, but a celebration of the rich traditions of percussion music from around the world. The event also provides a platform for both established and emerging artists to collaborate with each other. Tickets can be booked online.
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