KOCHI: A man promoting India’s artistic heritage for the last four decades, Kiran Seth at a talk organised at Rajagiri College of Business Studies explained what went into the making of SPIC MACAY. Society for the Promotion of Indian Classical Music and Culture Among Youth is country’s one of the largest cultural movements.
An IIT graduate and academician, Kiran’s tryst with classical arts was more of an accident. He remembers the day he came out of Brooklyn Academy after a dhrupad concert, awash with realisation, a man with a mission.
“While I was studying in IIT Kharagpur there were regular classical concerts. We used to just go and sit in the back and play cards or sleep. Later I started my PhD at Columbia University and attended this beautiful concert by chance. It was the moment I realised that every individual should have an opportunity to be exposed to the best of his or her heritage,” says Kiran on the beginning of SPIC MACAY.
“The ultimate vision of this movement is enriching the quality of formal education by creating awareness about the rich and heterogeneous cultural tapestry amongst the youth of our country. This will make education more holistic as it enables the student to explore themselves the abstract, mystical and subtle things in this world,” says Seth. For nearly 40 years SPIC MACAY has been able to expose generations of young Indian minds to dance, music, culture, cinema, folk art and yoga through the talks, camps, lectures, baithaks, conventions and music fests in the country and all over the world.
Remembering the moments he spent with his great guru Usthad Aminuddin Dagar, Seth says that it was he who taught him the importance of patience and faith in life. “He used to put me in a corner and make me sing the note sa... for hours. He made me sing the note for 8 hours a day throughout the month without giving me any explanation. The result of this process was not obvious or easy to see. After a couple of months he made me realise that to get real depth, you have to do it everyday. If you miss one day, you will loose 40 days,” he says.