What's your beat?

Published: 08 December, 2011 10:02 IST | Akshata Shetty |

Guinness World Record holder and human beatboxing champion Shlomo returns to India to curate Voctronica, India's first all-vocal beatboxing orchestra

Guinness World Record holder and human beatboxing champion Shlomo returns to India to curate Voctronica, India's first all-vocal beatboxing orchestra

If you have a vocal talent, don't miss this chance to be part of one of the first locally bred beatboxing events India has ever experienced - Voctronica. Conceptualised by British Council and organised in association with Zomba, Voctronica is the country's first all-vocal beatboxing orchestra that will tour India and the UK. The orchestra will be curated by Guinness World Record holder and human beatboxing champion Shlomo. 

Shlomo performs with an Indian artiste during his last visit to India in 

Talent search
All kinds of vocal talent, including singers, rappers, beatboxers, yodellers, Indian classical vocalists or people with any other form of vocal skills can audition for this orchestra. "As long as you have the power to move people with your voice, we want to hear from you," shares Shlomo.

Vishwesh K

But how does one find their voice? "It's all about expressing yourself. If you are going to stand out as an artiste, you have to have something to say and a reason to say it. What medium you choose to express that emotion is totally your choice, but I believe the voice has a unique power, we all have one, we just have to be bold enough to speak up and make ourselves heard," he informs.

Vishwesh Krishnamoorthy, the lead vocalist of hardcore band, Scribe, will be spearheading the project in India. Excited about the initiative, he says, "This isn't a reality show, it is reality. We are looking forward to the end product. We have a good amount of entries pouring in." According to Vishwesh, "Beatboxing is a new form of art that's picking up in India. Traditionally speaking, the art has been present in India for quite a while. An artiste can't play the mridangam unless he says the 'bol' (to speak), which is very similar to beatboxing. Voctronica will form an orchestra of voices, and we will be taking it to new levels as it proceeds," says Vishwesh. And will he be a part of the orchestra? "Absolutely!" he says.

Shlomo's journey
Ask Shlomo, how did he end up being a vocal artiste and he replies, "I started out as a drummer, learning classical orchestral percussion from the age of eight and then getting heavily into jazz drums. The vocal stuff is just way more convenient; dragging those drums everywhere was just exhausting!"

Sharing an experience he recently had, Shlomo says, "I was performing a gig at the legendary Glastonbury Festival to a crowd of over 10,000 people and there was a power cut. I was distraught thinking this would surely be the end of it all, but the crowd stuck around, whooping, singing and clapping until suddenly we were back on. There was a massive cheer and the rest of the set had so much energy." Having toured in India in 2010, Shlomo met a few artistes and was keen to do something with them. "I met a few when I was on my India tour last year, which was one of the main reasons for wanting to start Voctronica. Vineeth Vincent was one of them, he actually broke my Guinness World Record for the largest beatbox group with 1,246 people at Christ University in Bangalore. Last month I won it back with a group of 2,082," he says.

Voctronica invites Indian beatboxers to send in their audition videos from now until December 16. Upload your audition video of less than 5 minutes onto YouTube and then fill out the registration form here -- http://soundpad.britishcouncil.org.in.For any queries, email bcsoundpad@gmail.com

Five top beatboxing tips for aspiring beatboxers
1. Be yourself! By all means study other beatboxers, but you need to have your own style
2. Practise as much as you can.
3. Grab the mic at all opportunities, at the local open mic night, nightclub or karaoke night
4. Get yourself out there -- start a facebook page, twitter and a blog and post regular youtube videos.
5. Enjoy yourself. If it's getting boring or getting you down, change what you're doing, jam with some local musicians, singers, rappers, or invent a new style like beatboxing while playing the tabla.

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