This promises to be an exciting evening if the concert of 2016 was anything to go by!
Kathak Dance – Kathak is one of the six classical dances of India. The word katha comes from the Sanskrit meaning story or tale and can be traced back to Vedic times.
The technique of Kathak calls for highly elaborate choreographic language using mudras (code hand-gestures), footwork, facial expressions and positions of the body. Grace, emotion and sophistication of gesture coupled with speed and the precision of its rhythms give Kathak its essential qualities.
The musical accompaniment includes percussion, often with the tabla and the harmonium. Kathak is built around the dialogue between the percussion instruments and the dancers who wear ghunguru (strings of approximately 250 small bells) wound around each ankle. The choreographic steps are often recited by bol, mnemotechnical syllables that describe the steps and rhythmic speed with which they will be performed. The stories performed in Kathak are based on Hath Krishnaleela, the Râmâyana or the Mahâbhârata, the great sacred epics of India.
The Indian Classical Music will be from the North Indian tradition based on raga which is a melodic framework for improvisation akin to a melodic mode but with no direct translation to concepts in European classical music. Each raga is an array of melodic structures with at least five notes that provides the musician with a framework within which to improvise.
Indian classical vocal is one of the most ancient forms of singing. It is drafted from deep experiential knowledge and understanding of sound and impacts the human system and the universe. The purpose of Indian classical Music was never for entertaining it is carefully designed to take human beings to their higher level of awareness and as such is one of many systems within Indian culture to attain liberation.
The main focus for a vocalist is to approach and particularly precisely embrace the sound introducing the notes of the raga one by one as the improvisation unfolds. There are many styles of raga with Dhrupad being the most ancient. As different cultures influenced India so its music has evolved and now other forms such as Khyal, Thumries, Tappa, Dhamar, Gazal and Chaturang are also practised.
In ancient time ragas were sung continuously for twenty four to forty eight hours creating powerful atmospheres. Now they tend to be sung within 1-2 hrs. or sometimes 15-20Min.
Each Raga consists of Bada khyal, Chota khyal, Dhamar, Thumari, Tarana, & Bhajan in last. Thumri and Bhajan are also sung as semi classical patterns of singing.
The main aim of an Indian classical singer is to attain liberation through their music. A concert has the power to “colour the mind” and certainly affect the emotions of the audience – come and be coloured!
These concerts have different ticket prices – please pay what you can afford