Indika 2016 Recap

Posted on August 2, 2016 by Stephanie Martin

This weekend saw the close of our 2016 Indika festival and what a week it has been! We opened on Friday 22nd July with two amazing dance performances of styles rarely seen in the UK. Irina Kommisarova started the show with a beautiful presentation of Odissi and Prateeksha Kashi closed with a dramatic Kuchipudi routine. Saturday night saw Carnatic rising star, Abhishek Raghuram, take to the stage with Kousic Sen and HN Bhaskar. Abhishek’s performance had a profound effect on both the audience and our Music India students and so they were delighted when he became an active Summer School tutor. His performance was following by a beautifully mellow evening raga by the talented muscial sisters, Ragini and Nandini Shankar, accompanied by the busiest tabla maestro in the business, our very own Kousic Sen!

Audeinces were greeted bright and early on Sunday morning with a rousing raga by the powerful vocalist Vijay Rajput, accompanied by Rekesh Chauhan and, once again, Kousic Sen. It set a great tone for the day as Sunday also saw our Indian Choral Workshop take place, led by the wonderful tutor, Dr Sudha Raja. The newly formed choir treated our audience to some pre-show entertainment as they showed off the tunes they had learnt during their workshop. Sunday night’s Indika showcase was a delight for fans of Bharatanatyam dance as Mohanapriyan Thavarajah, Dakshina Vaidyanathan and Nehha Bhatnagar all took to the stage with a variety of stunning performances. We began the week well with Flute Jayanth, the Bansuri flute maestro, taking to the stage alongside HN Bhaskar and Neyveli Venkatesh.

Tuesday night saw some of the best young talent in Indian Classic music show off their amazing talents as they competed for the Yuva Sangeet Ratna award for Best Young Musician of the Year. The award went to Jasdeep Singh Degun, but as the talent was so great, the judges decided to give two runner up prizes instead of one, with these going to Kiruthika Nadarajah and Prabhat Rao.

Wednesday saw our second Morning Raga of the festival as Dr Sangeeta Shankar and Kousic Sen helped the audience members start their day with the melodic mix of violin and tabla. The team were kept very busy as the CEO or Arts Council England, Darren Henley, visited the festival. We were delighted he was able to see the debut performance of Tarang’s new sound as well as a rousing performance by our Sabrang choir. Tarang not only debuted tracks from their upcoming album but we premiered the trailer video they created. The video can be viewed here.

Thursday evening saw the return of Dr Sangeeta Shankar and her daughters, Ragini and Nandini, as part of the innovative Indian music band, InStrings. The Shankars were joined by Sukhwinder Singh Namdhari and Shyam Edwanker, for an amazing performance that saw a grand new majestic sound given to popular Indian tunes. Thursday’s Evening Raga saw Abhijit Pohankar, the highly acclaimed keyboardist, joined by Kousic Sen to showcase some innovative Indian fusion music. Our festival closed on Friday evening with a stunning performance by Carnatic maestro, Sudha Raghunathan, delighting adueinces alongside Balu Raghuraman and M. Balachandar. Last, but my no means least, Indika 2016 finished with a final Evening Raga performance by Jyotsna Srikanth and Neyveli Venkatesh, meaning that, from start to finish, this years Indika festival was a delight for all of the senses.

We would like to extend a warm thank you to every audience member, performer and staff member who made this year such a success. We already cannot wait for next year!

There are 60 second round up videos of each day of the festival available on our Facebook page here.

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