Thursday, August 13, 2015

8th Annual Ashu Babu Memorial Tabla School Concert

On Saturday 1st August 2015, the day after Guru Purnima (the full moon for Gurus), we held our 8th annual tabla school concert at QLD Multicultural Centre. There was a real step up in quality this year with 21 students all preparing well in the preceding months and playing their best on the night. We have to thank my senior guru-bhai Govinda Chakraborty for the way he influenced our lessons in his visit last September, resulting in a lot more attention being paid to counting rhythms and maintaining correct posture while playing. Quite a number of the intermediate students started to get more deeply into practice in the last year.

Harmonium accompaniment was given by Joseph Nand and this year we added dilruba accompaniment by Adarshbir Singh for a few of the acts, which really added to the colour of the naghma. Many thanks to Brent for the photos, to our regular sponsors Brisbane Indian Times, and to all the students and parents for their continued efforts.

Item 1: Bhajan by Rhea Ravi, accompanied by Nikhil Deo.

Item 2: Beginners - Aarav and Aditya.

Item 3: Juniors - Ashwin, Josh, Aaryan, Mann.

Item 4: Varun Lal. Varun was going to perform in the Inaugural Ashu Babu Memorial Tabla School Concert in 2008, but had a tragic car accident which left him unable to walk, talk, or move much at all. After years of intensive therapy and hard work he restarted tabla lessons last year and performed at our school concert! He's unable to use his left hand so performed a kayda and paran composed especially for the right hand only.

Item 5: Ladies - Anna and Rhea.

Item 6: Westlake and Chermside - Ishaaq, Bipro, Hari, Ayngaran, Sivamsan

Item 7: Gold Coast - Arun, Siva, Nikhil, Thejan

Item 8: Seniors - Sanjey, Tito, Jesinthan

Presentation of certificates, featuring our guru lineage from Benares Gharana founder Pt Ram Sahai, to my gurus and myself.

Adarshbir brought a beautiful new sound and energy to our concert with the dilruba.

Tabla solo by Shen Flindell, accompanied by Adarshbir Singh (dilruba) and Joseph Nand (harmonium).

...watched over by Guru-ji Late Pt Ashutosh Bhattacharya.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Various concerts Nov 2014 - Jul 2015

It's been a while since my last round-up of past gigs, and I've got a big tabla school concert to post about so I'm catching up first. Here's what I've been up to since going to Varanasi last November...

DEC 2014

FEB 2015

MAR 2015

Bart Stenhouse (guitar), Shen Flindell (tabla), Shyan Kishore (bansuri)

APR 2015
  • Sat Apr 11 St Lucia: Rahim Zullah (vocal), Shen Flindell (tabla) - Private mehfil until late in the night. Everyone seemed to be happy with my ghazal accompaniment, which is a new thing for me.
  • Sat Apr 18 Banyo: Pt Shantanu Bhattacharya (vocal) with Shen Flindell (tabla) - A really memorable concert which was pulled together on short notice, thanks to Shantanu-da's student Inderpreet for bringing him, and to Swara Mohini association for hosting the concert. I really hope that he can come back regularly.

    Shen Flindell (tabla), Pt Shantanu Bhattacharyya (vocal), Rupam (tanpura), Manbir Singh (dilruba)

  • Sat Apr 25 Sth Maclean - Ashu Babu Memorial Tabla School @ Selva Vinayagar Temple - After a traditional tabla lehra by Thejan and Sivamsan, my 3 senior students Tito, Sanjey and Jesinthan, along with myself and sitarist Anju Ketheeswaran presented an original arrangement for sitar and 4 tabla with parts of sitar solo and tabla lehera intertwined. It also included a special arrangement of complimentary kaydas on differently tuned tabla, creating an arpeggio effect, something I'm calling "kayda parivar" (kayda family).

MAY 2015

JUN 2015

  • Fri Jun 12 BEMAC: World Music Cafe with Feridun Avar and friends - An interesting gig organised by my good friend, Turkish musician Feridun Avar, in which we collaborated with kora player Lansana Camara. We presented a mix of solo, duo and trio pieces, largely improvised and well-received by the BEMAC audience.

  • Sat Jun 13 BEMAC: Spirit of Bhakti CD launch with Shai Shriki - A glorious success, as Spirit of Bhakti launched our new CD Open Door to a full house at BEMAC. Go and buy our CD now, it's fantastic.

    Spirit of Bhakti CD Launch: Marcello Milani (guest guitar), Shen Flindell (tabla), Rebecca Bornstein (vocals, guitar), Menaka Visvanathan Thomas and students (vocals), Shai Shriki (guest oud, vocals)
  • Sat Jun 20 Zillmere: Rahim Zullah and friends morning concert - attended by about 5 people, but fun.
  • Sat Jun 20 Tamborine: Nepal fundraiser featuring Tenzin Choegyal and Rafael Karlen (saxophone) - An unexpected invitation to join Tenzin and improvise with some amazing jazz musicians made for a pleasant night with some unexpected good luck. It was a really fun night which raised thousands for Nepal, and I met my old school friend Kara who offered to host a Spirit of Bhakti concert in August, which turned out to be a great success too.

JUL 2015

AUG 2015