Tunes beyond borders

This World Music Day, Indian Music Experience brings artistes from Germany and Japan to talk about music from their nations

Published: 20th June 2020 06:42 AM  |   Last Updated: 20th June 2020 06:42 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

BENGALURU: Music has been a universal healer for many. This World Music day (June 21), it’s not just about celebrating art but also about using it as a tool to bring the world together. Indian Music Experience has come up with Music From Around the World, a virtual meetup of musicians on their Facebook page. Musicians like German saxophonist Julius Gabriel and Japanese musicians Kahoru Nakamura and Hitomi Nakamura will be a part of the event. 

World Music day, which is nothing less than an annual ball for the music industry, would have had a long list of events lined up if the situation were normal. But this time, plans are a little different. Manasi Prasad, director, Indian Music Experience (IME), says this time they are trying to change the problem into an opportunity. “We are trying to look at the silver lining by asking artistes to speak about the music from their respective countries and its cultural significance,” says Prasad. 

Speaking about the cultural similarity of India and Japan, Kahoru, who plays an ancient Japanese instrument called Biwa, says, “The Biwa is used in traditional Japanese court music called Gagaku. It is like a Japanese version of veena, because the goddess Benzaiten, who is the Japanese form of Saraswati, plays the Biwa.” On the other hand, Hitomi, who plays the Hichikiri, which is similar to an Indian flute, says, “It is a wind instrument used in traditional Japanese music. Even though it is quite small, it produces many variations of tone.”

Agreeing that  saxophone has its origin in the West, Gabriel says he is glad to see a Western instrument being used in traditional Indian music. “The saxophone is a versatile instrument that has been used in Western classical music, but now finds expression in jazz and other contemporary forms of music. I do know that saxophone is also used in Indian classical Carnatic music and that is very interesting,” says Gabriel, who is looking forward to being an artist-in-residence at the Indian Music Experience in a few months.The event will be held on June 21, 6pm onwards.

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