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Nisha Rajagopal’s New Jersey debut … but whats lacking here from organizations?

Submitted by on May 23, 2011 – 12:52 amNo Comment

Today’s concert by @Nisha_Rajagopal brings an important issue to address. But before I get to that, a few words about the concert itself.

It certainly was a delight to see some upcoming top artists in New Jersey. Thats why i love the spring and summer seasons, as we get to hear a plethora of talented singers.

Nisha sang well and I personally liked her Kabhoji ragam based thyagaraja krithi Evarimaata the best. I also very much enjoyed Sama Gama Lola in Hindolam. Her exposition of Hindolam truly brought out the sweetness of the ragam itself. Incidentally Hindolam also happens to be my favorite and surely makes my day at concerts where Hindolam or Malkuans at concerts.

Nisha Rajagopal was ably accompanied by Trivandrum Balaji on Mridangam and Smitha Krishnan on Violin was organized by CMANA an organization that promotes Carnatic Music in New Jersey. USA. However, I did feel the sound of the violin a bit shrill and squeaky though.

Also Kudos to rasika’s of New Jersey, unlike concerts in India, music enthusiasts here don’t have the habit of getting up and walking out during the Thani Avartam of Balaji. On the contrary everyone listens to the thani with enthusiasm and by seeing the audience, it is clear that all of them enjoy this as much as they enjoy the rest of the concert. My sincere applause goes to the wonderful audience of New Jersey. Truly, I have never seen mass exodus of people walking out in my years of attenence here.

So coming to the issues, it’s funny to see the lack of a large presence in these shows. I went for a dinner party after the concert and I met at least 3 families, who were surprised that Nisha Rajagopal was performing in the city.

So given the poor turnout and the fact that listeners with interest not even knowing that a concert is happening, I am beginning to see that most organizers are not taking advantage of social networking and other tools such as Facebook and Twitter, but are sticking to age old word of mouth advertising and email.

This is sad, as I think it is hurting in two ways, one the artist dont get the audience levels they deserve. I am sure that for the artists, coming all the way from India, and not having a decent audience, can be demotivating and also will possibly not bring out the best from them.

Second, it’s really sad that Carnatic music lovers lose an opportunity to hear such a talented singer perform. We in New Jersey are hungry for listening to such top talent, and missing a concert and not knowing of one happening is very sad indeed and a big cause of disappointment especially, after one gets to know about it.

I think it is time CMANA and other organizations start adopting social networking to establish better connections with the community. I myself have started tweeting with #CMANA and I suggest they use the same for broadcasting upcoming concerts. Organizations should also start setting up Facebook pages and start attracting members and link with communities.

This will help not only musicians and enthusiasts, but will also help propagate the interest n indian classical music.

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