One Week to LearnQuest Music Festival Through a Series of Lecture-Demonstrations

George Ruckert
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By Ravi Arora

BOSTON–As in the previous years, LearnQuest Music Conference has an exciting line up consisting of eminent maestros and budding young musicians of Hindustani and Carnatic music.

The conference started with a kick-off concert on Marh 18th in collaboration with the India Society of Worcester featuring Swati Panda (Hindustani vocalist), Revathi Ramaswamy (Carnatic Veena player), Apratim Majumdar (Sarod) with Amit Chatterjee on Tabla, Pravin Sitaram on Mridangam and B. G. Parulkar on the harmonium.

Subsequently, the Conference presented a series of lecture-demonstrations at various locations in the Boston area:

· Melody and Rhythm development in an instrumental recital by Anirban Dasgupta on Sarod and Amit Chatterjee on tabla.

· Role of Ragas in semiclassical and popular songs by Vaishnavi Kondapalli (vocal), Yogesh Karale on Tabla, Kaavya Valiveti on the harmonium.

· How to tune and take care of your Tabla by Ramana Akella.

The next three lecture-demonstrations, are scheduled on April 1st, 2nd and 5th, and are free to the public.

· April 1, Saturday, 4:30 PM – 6 PM: Evolution of North Indian Classical Instrumental Music with Senia-Maihar gharana by George Ruckert on Sarod with Jerry Leake on Tabla, at Northeastern University, Curry Student Center, 360 Huntington Ave., Boston MA

· April 2, Sunday,: 10:30 AM – 12 PM, Lec-Dem: How to take care of your Harmonium by Ramana Akella, Online (visit for details)

· April 5, Wednesday, 1 PM – 3 PM: Colors of the Music of Veena by Saraswathi Ranganathan on Veena with Sai Raghavan on Mridangam, at 1A Recital Hall, 1140 Boylston Street, Berklee College of Music, Boston MA

Music lecture demonstrations are a valuable educational tool that can enhance one’s understanding and appreciation of music. These lecture demonstrations will provide a valuable opportunity for students of music, educators, and music enthusiasts to learn and gain some practical knowledge from experts on various topics related to Indian Classical Music.

These demonstrations can also provide historical context about a particular genre of music, its origins, evolution, and significant contributors. For instance, the lec-dem on April 1 by Dr. George Ruckert will describe the evolution of north Indian classical instrumental music with Senia-Maihar gharana. This gharana was founded by Baba Allauddin Khan, a renowned musician and multi-instrumentalist who was born in 1862 in Shibpur village in present-day Bangladesh. Baba Allauddin Khan was a disciple of the great sarod player Ustad Muhammad Wazir Khan of Rampur-Sahaswan Gharana, and later became the guru of several legendary Indian classical musicians, including Pandits Ravi Shankar, Nikhil Banejee, V.G. Jog, Ustad Ali Akbar Khan, Vidushi Annapurna Devi to name a few.

Finally, learning how to take care of your music instrument is an essential aspect of being a musician. It also helps in maintaining sound quality, enhancing performance, developing discipline and responsibility, and showing respect for the instrument. By taking care of your instrument, you not only extend its lifespan but also develop a deep connection with it, which can enhance your overall music-making experience. The April 2nd lec-dem by Ramana Akella, an instrument craftsman, is on “How to take care of your Harmonium”.


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