Morning Raga brings an evening full of bliss to New Jersey fusion lovers
The confluence of two genres Jazz and Carnatic music, can be extremely tricky to pull off.
Morning Raga, a fusion ensemble lead by Padmashri Smt. Sudha Raghunathan along with Amit Heri and 4 others did exactly that. They treated the New Jersey music lovers with a fast paced 3 hrs of East meets West, musical extravaganza. I have heard Sudha many many times performing classical concerts, Jugalbandhi’s and even singing film songs. But, today she certainly showed her flair for fusion too. Ofcourse she admitted that her foray into fusion did raise plenty of eyebrows in the conventional circuit, however judging by the crowd of youngsters, it seems clear that to preserve history, culture and legacy, change is inevitable.
Morning Raga during the evening? Certainly had people talking, but Sudha was quick to start the concert with the reason behind why it was called so. She explained that the concerts are based on the theme of the popular motion picture ’Morning Raga’ where the bollywood star Shabana Azmi gave a beautiful performance with the theme being the fusion of Indian and Western music.
I must complement the entire team of artists, who excelled in every way possible. The artists ensemble included;
- Sri. B V.Raghavendra Rao: Electric Violin
- Sri. Tiruvarur Vaidyanathan: Mridangam
- Sri. Keith Peters: Base Guitar
- Sri. Arun Kumar: Western Drums
- Sri. Guruprasad: Ghatam
The tempo was well maintained by each artist and the tani avartanam by the percussionists was simply electrifying.
Fusion music if not carefully composed can be disastrous, and Amit Heri along with others brought the fine nuances and delicate blends to complement Sudha’s vocal singing. The pieces were chosen carefully and woven very well with the western instruments.
The concert was organized by Jana Seva’s to raise funds for work with orphanages and old age homes in India. The interesting touch by organizers was the post concert dinner, where they had each artist sit in different tables so that music lovers could interact with them. Very good idea indeed.
To add to all this excitement, it was Tiruvarur Vaidyanathan 50th birthday, and a beautiful cake was cut, so that Vaidyanathan could celebrate this loved day with us.
Altos de Chavon – an enchanting mediaval city
Altos de Chavon, is 16th century replica of a typical Mediterranean village perched at a peak overlooking the Chavón River.
With stoned pathways, decorative ironwork, period furnitures and enchanting buildings, the village is simply a beauty in architecture providing us, a glimpse of the splendor of forgotten crafts of metal work and stone carving.
Just strolling along the paved walkways brings a multitude of buildings, a centrally carved fountain plaza, amphitheater, The St. Stanislaus Church, plazas and terraces, brings out the artistic craftsmanship of Dominican artisans
The village was inaugurated in 1982 with the concert of Frank Sinatra at the amphitheater and was built to be a cultural center for the Dominican residents.
Altos de Chavon was built as a center of culture for the Dominican people. Today, this beautiful village is made up of quaint shops, boutiques, art galleries, fine restaurants and an archeological museum. Residents at the grand Casa de Campo have easy access to the village through the golf carts provided by the resort.
The village gets even more beautiful at night, when its lighted.