Music notes from Dharavi

Jul 29, 2013, 08:27 IST | Ruchika Kher

Dharavi Rocks, a music project comprising of slum children, will take centre stage in the city. Get ready for a power-packed performance on Wednesday

Two years back, ACORN Foundation India Trust, an NGO, tied up with Blue Frog to create a platform that encourages hidden talent amongst slum kids. This resulted in Dharavi Rocks, a joint project working for the welfare of slum children and waste collectors/ragpickers, initiating them into music, bringing positive creative experiences into their lives and creating a bond between communities. The group is set to enthrall music buffs on July 31 with their spellbinding gig.

Abhijit Jejurikar with the kids from Dharavi Rocks

“This show will witness Dharavi Rocks collaborating with artistes such as members from the band Agnee, artistes Vasuda Sharma and Ayush Shrestha as well as a live percussive-based energetic performance of original songs,” says Abhijit Jejurikar, a management professional who is the workshop conductor and volunteers for Dharavi Rocks.

Currently, the programme has one centre in Dharavi. There are more than 100 kids between 8 and 17 years, who attend classes, which are conducted by various artistes.

“Typically, we have a ratio of 90:10 for boys and girls, as there is a challenge to get more girls due to permission issues from their parents. However, we are working on it and are trying to do more sessions, which are focussed towards girls. Whenever we do our shows, there are always 20 kids on stage along with me,” explains Jejurikar.

Jejurikar starts his classes with vocal exercises and moves on to teaching different techniques of playing the drums where two or three groups play different rhythms. Next, he composes a song by asking all the kids about their thought process to write lyrics on. “To emphasise on the concept of recycle and reuse, we create music from waste materials including drum barrels, coffee shakers, paint cans, plastic boxes and other types of junk found at Dharavi’s slums,” adds Jejurikar who conducts these sessions twice a week after work. Apart from regular music classes, children are exposed to different workshops about genres like African music, Hip Hop, Beat Boxing, Rap and Breakdance.

On July 31, 9 pm
At Blue Frog, Mathuradas Mills Compound, Lower Parel.
Call  61586158
Entry  R350, post 6.30 pm

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