RBA: A World In Trance Festival: The Gundecha Brothers – Dhrupad Music of India

Saturday, April 30, 2016. 8:00 pm

Robert Browning Associates presents

Apr 29 – May 1 A World of Trance Festival – 2nd edition

7 PM Pre-concert lec/dem with Brian Q Silver

Brian Q. Silver is an expert on the art of dhrupad. He has taught Urdu language and literature, Indian music, South Asian culture, and world and contemporary American music at colleges and universities throughout the US and abroad, and published essays on South Asian, Iranian, and Middle Eastern music. 

Since earliest times music and dance have played a major role in uniting people through ritual, often seeking union with the divine through trance or ecstasy. This festival seeks to bring back some spiritual nourishment to our lives; to focus our physical and mental selves. While the music and rituals associated with each genre are very different from each other, they share a common thread in bringing people together in search of enlightenment. These are just a few of the many forms that music takes to enrich our lives.

Gundecha Brothers

Dhrupad Music of India

The Gundecha Brothers are leading exponents of dhrupad, North India’s oldest classical musical form that is not often performed today. Disciples of the legendary Ustad Zia Fariduddin Dagar and Ustad Zia Mohiuddin Dagar, the brothers are renowned for their performances of this deeply spiritual and meditative vocal tradition rooted in Vedic chant. They received the title of Padmashri, India’s highest honor in the arts, in 2012, and have performed at music festivals and major concert halls throughout the world. Vocalists Umakant and Ramakant Gundecha are joined by Akhilesh Gundacha on pakhawaj (barrel drum).

7 PM Pre-concert lec/dem with Brian Q Silver

Brian Q. Silver is an expert on the art of dhrupad. He has taught Urdu language and literature, Indian music, South Asian culture, and world and contemporary American music at colleges and universities throughout the US and abroad, and published essays on South Asian, Iranian, and Middle Eastern music.

“They are two, yet one, so attuned, so aware of the other. Hand and arm gestures, like graceful mudras, seem to summon the sounds from impossibly deep, athletically trained inner chambers. The opening complete, they take flight, soaring into a spiritual space that has them singing, now together, now alone, back and forth, carrying us on wings of astounding synchronicity and soul stirring devotion. “ —The Hindu

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