Friday, March 07, 2008

Culturally sound

I learnt very recently (about a year ago) from my violin teacher back at home that December is the month he is the busiest because that is when the music season reaches its peak. I knew there was a particular time of the year which was called "Music Season" in Chennai. Especially by the Hindu Newspaper which would regularly publish a "Music Season" special all month writing reviews of concerts that just got over and pulicizing the ones to come. I suspected there existed a peak time in the year. Because when I was a little girl (about primary school I guess), I knew there was a time of the year when on a Saturday or Sunday evening, I would have to dress up all neat and nice and my parents would take me either to the Music Academy or Narada Gaana Sabha in Chennai to attend concerts. Either music or dance. I seem to remember that every year we would attend atleast a few during the season.

And I remember quite distinctly that I used to get bored. Bored witless. I could never make a head or tail of the postures and movements of the dancers. It used to be like, "I know she is trying to tell me something! I just know it!". But I never quite got to the bottom of it. Like a charades game I was really bad at :P

Music was even worse I suppose. I had learnt music only for a little while then and knew only one taalam which they somehow rarely used. So I couldn't entertain myself in any possible way. There were only two notable exceptions when I didn't get bored in a concert. One was Kunakudi Vaidhyanathan's violin concert where after he finished the classical music stuff, he started playing movie songs. Another was by a dancer called Alamelu whose performance, I somehow understood and enjoyed.

As time went on, the frequency of attending concerts decreased, for what reason, I do not know. But all I remember is that by the time I reached high school, I didn't go for concerts anymore. I lost touch with classical music and I found that I didn't miss it much.

But lately, I have started enjoying concerts :-/ :O

We went for a bharatnatyam concert, here at NUS, which went on for two hours or so. I didn't get bored at all!

Its fun to organise a concert for my orchestra but I wanna be sitting in the audience, just once, and listen to the orchestra perform brand new pieces for me to enjoy. Of course, much of this sudden interest is because of Clueless. Ever since I started learning the violin, I have found that when we sit together at concerts she teaches me music. Theory of music by asking me to identify the notes and raagam (at which I fail quite miserably, but she doesn't give up! :D). Lately, I have found myself trying to learn to sing "I'll be there for you" with clueless and trying to harmonize with her. Next step, harmonise for "Come What May"! Lately, I have started enjoying not just Indian classical music and dance, I have started liking other kinds of stuff too!

The NUS arts festival is going on and believe me, if I had the time and the money, I would attend EVERY SINGLE show (except Chinese Drama, of course :P). I am now officially fascinated by performing arts. I got a sample of Chinese dance, Chinese orchestra, Ilsa Tari, ballet etc etc etc. And I want more! So much more!

From a little girl who got bored at concerts to a 20 year old who is addicted to performing arts. Somwhere... something went wrong :P


Shubhada said...

How about somewhere something went right!! I am glad to know that you started enjoying classical dance and music. Of course it is the company that gets us interested in many things. Hope you will continue with learning your violin. I do not know even whatever you know about dance and music. Still I enjoy a concert. Guess with growing up we start understanding things better. Keep growing up in these directions!!

Clueless said...

Ha! Gotta agree with the poster above - somewhere, something went right! :D

You are a natural at stuff like this, don't worry. It just took me to bring out that side of you. And yup, it definitely is going to be our goal for the next year to get our harmonizing skills polished! We're already halfway through, it's not too difficult now! :D