GOPIO and its Central Jersey chapter organized a lecture demonstration of Hindustani Classical Vocal on Sunday May 1, 2016, Sunday, by Viraj Amar, an exponent of Hindustani Classical Vocal from Benaras Gharana. Amar gave a lecture-demonstration on the topic ‘Moods and Shades of Morning Ragas’ covering a wide range of topics relating to rich Hindustani classical vocal tradition. She is the Chief Coordinator of Upasana School of Performing Arts (Upasana), Gujarat University. In 2012-13 GOPIO had entered into an MOU with Upasana to have an exchange program for students and the faculty to promote classical art and culture. The MOU bore the fruits now that GOPIO Vice President Ram Gadhavi took the initiative to invite Amar for the Lecture-demonstration on classical music.
Amar lucidly explained the finer aspects of the art and its subtle nuances. She sang Raga Nat Bhairav -vilambit khayal followed by drut khayal. While singing she demonstrated the change from slow paced-vilambit laya – to the drut laya-crescendo while explaining aalaap, badhat, Bol taan, aalaap taan. She also explained how the artiste uses various voice production techniques for generating various kinds of taans. She then sang two bandishes in raga desi-one traditional Bandish and the other a haveli sangeet bandish. She also spoke on her training in Guru shishya parampara.
The lecture demo was attended by discerning listeners and the question-answer session following the lec-dem turned out to be very interesting. Such programs bring the listeners closer to the art and the Artiste. Deepak Gundani on Tabla and Amar Bhatt on Harmonium gave an able support to the artiste. Such an initiative by GOPIO was appreciated by all.
Photo above: Artists with GOPIO officials: From l. to r.: GOPIO-North Jersey Treasurer Gaurang Mehta, GOPIO-Silicon Valley President Ashok Bhatt, GOPIO Business Council Co-Chair Prakash Shah, GOPIO-North Jersey Vice President Rajul Shah, GOPIO-North Jersey Asst. Treasurer Dhananjay Desai, Main Artiste Viraj Amar, Amar Bhatt (Accompanied on Harmonium), GOPIO Vice President Ram Gadhavi, Dipak Gundani (Accompanied on Tabla) and GOPIO Associate Secretary Jaswant Mody