Berklee Indian Ensemble Welcomes Shankar Mahadevan as Artist in Residence This Month

Shankar Mahadevan (Photo credit: Mike Ritter)
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By Tori Donahue
Berklee College of Music
BOSTON–The Berklee Indian Ensemble, a dynamic group of students representing more than 40 countries, will host Indian master vocalist and composer Shankar Mahadevan as artist in residence this December. Mahadevan will perform with the ensemble in the group’s sold-out Berklee Signature Series concert, Shankar Mahadevan Meets Berklee, on Tuesday, December 13, 2016, at 8:00 p.m. at the Berklee Performance Center.
Shankar Mahadevan (Photo credit: Mike Ritter)
Shankar Mahadevan (Photo credit: Mike Ritter)

The concert will also be globally available via a live stream. The concert will be produced by Annette Philip ’09 and Clint Valladares ’98, artistic and managing directors of the Berklee India Exchange, which serves as a platform for cultural conversation about Indian music through artist residencies, musical collaborations, and performances.

“Shankar Mahadevan is one of India’s finest and most versatile vocal virtuosos,” says Philip, a Berklee alumna and founder of the Berklee Indian Ensemble. “Not only is he considered a living legend by Indian classical enthusiasts, but he is also revered by jazz aficionados the world over, who came to know of him as a masterful improviser through the band Remember Shakti, where he played alongside John McLaughlin and Zakir Hussain. His popular and Bollywood music, on the other hand, appeals to audiences of all ages. The ensemble has enjoyed exploring his vast repertoire, spanning almost two decades, and is delighted to be performing new arrangements of some of his classics in Indian folk, semi-classical, contemporary, global jazz, and devotional music.”

The Berklee Indian Ensemble was founded in 2011 with 18 students. The group now features more than 40 musicians for each concert. They have also accumulated more than 19 million views on YouTube with their viral music videos. The ensemble has been featured throughout the United States at various festivals and music venues, and has traveled to Bengaluru, India, to perform at one of India’s most prestigious music festivals, Bengaluru Ganesh Utsava, this past September.

Watch Berklee Indian Ensemble music videos:

Previous artists in residence with the Berklee Indian Ensemble include Indian vocalist, composer, and producer Clinton Cerejo in 2013; Grammy- and Academy Award–winning composer A. R. Rahman in 2014; and master vocal improviser Vijay Prakash in 2015. The Berklee India Exchange helps Indian musicians realize their dreams through scholarships, workshops, master classes, and performance opportunities.


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