Singing in the rain

Updated: Aug 22, 2018, 09:05 IST | The Guide Team

A national music festival themed on monsoon ragas returns to Mumbai with a performance featuring Pt Shivkumar Sharma and Sanjeev Abhyankar

 Pt Shivkumar Sharma
Pt Shivkumar Sharma

Ragas, of course, are divided into the different times of the day and synchronise with the various seasons. And for 17 years, a festival called Barkha Ritu has celebrated those that are synonymous with the monsoon. The event was initially held only in Mumbai, but grew to become an eight-city affair, attracting stalwarts like Vishwamohan Bhatt, TM Krishna and Hariprasad Chaurasia. The event now returns to its home city, with a performance featuring Pt Shivkumar Sharma on santoor and Sanjeev Abhyankar on vocals. We caught up with the latter ahead of the show. Edited excerpts from the interview:

You sing both Indian classical and film music. What are some key differences between the two?
When I sing classical music, the entire process is my own creation. I have to be creative enough to keep the audience glued throughout my performance, and also execute my ideas with perfection. But when I sing for films, I only execute the idea that the music director has.

Sanjeev Abhyankar
Sanjeev Abhyankar

You also compose devotional music. How is that process different from Indian classical songs?
While composing a devotional song, I need to bring out the meaning of the lyrics by creating a tune which will do that. I don't need to stick to any one particular raga, like it normally is with Hindustani classical.

When did you first meet Pt Shivkumar Sharma, and what are some of your biggest takeaways from this association?
I met Pt Shivkumar ji around 30 years ago, and what I have learnt from listening to him is how sur and taal go hand-in-hand.

What have you got in store for your show on Wednesday?
We will be presenting songs that include different malhars like dhuliya, gaud and ramdasi.

On: August 22, 7 pm AT Nehru Centre, Dr Annie Besant Road, Worli.
Log on to:
Entry: Rs 300 and Rs 500

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