Cheer on budding musicians

From the traditional repertoire of Bharatnatyam to Dhrupad performances, NCPA's Umang series serves as a platform for young talented musicians and dancers in the classical genre. Today, watch performances by flautist Nihar Kabinittal and vocalist Suchismita Das

With an aim to promote young talent, the National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA) started the Umang series about three years back.

Hindustani vocalist Suchismita Das

Today, it has become a platform for artistes to make a name for themselves and be recognised as upcoming talent in the industry. Two such artistes Nihar Kabinittal and Suchismita Das will be performing today at the NCPA, hoping that the audience appreciates their performance.

"Many a time renowned musicians come for these concerts to find out who the next generation of artistes are," says Dr Suvarnalata Rao, head of programming, Indian music at NCPA.

Flautist Nihar Kabinittal

But she admits that the response is not always as expected. "Many people still prefer going to concerts only when the performers are famous. They feel it may be a risk as they are not sure how the performance may turn out to be," she adds.

Nevertheless, Rao feels, that theĀ  platform that Umang provides has been very beneficial to a large number of musicians. "Young musicians need a platform. There is always an internship required and in performing arts how do the artistes know how their audience will react to their performance unless they actually perform?" asks Dr Rao.

27-year-old Nihar KabinittalĀ  completely agrees with her. "Especially, when it is a stage like the NCPA, young artistes are sure to benefit from it," he says. Nihar, who works as an engineer with a leading sports channel, has been playing the flute for the last eight years.

"Classical music is not so popular today as it was 10 years back and that is why such initiatives prove to be helpful," he adds. Ask him if he soon wants to take up music full time and he says, "I don't play for people. I play to be happy. Music makes me happy and I don't want it to ever become commercial. Music is sacred for me."

Perhaps that's why the theme chosen for the day is Shringar (beauty) and Bhakti (devotion). Suchismita Das, the 28-year-old classical singer who has been performing for over 12 years now, will be performing at the NCPA for the first time today. "I really hope I get a good response. I am really looking forward to it," she says.

On Today, 6.30 pm
At Little Theatre, NCPA, Nariman Point. Call 2824567 / 66223724

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