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  Wednesday, 10.23.2019

02 Oct 2019, Wednesday - Gandhi Jayanti
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St. Louis Indian Music Festival
Saturday, September 21, 2019, 04:30pm - 09:00pm
Contact soorya performing arts

6th St. Louis Indian Music Festival

Soorya Performing Arts, a not for profit organization, is bringing 6th St. Louis Indian music festival to showcase different music genres from India.  This will be held 9on September 20, 21, 22nd – 2019 at Gandhi center in Manchester, MO. Indian music has a history of 4 millennia. Its work in music dates back to 2nd century BCE. The great works like Natya Shastra (2nd Century BCE) and Sangeeta Ratnakara (11th Century AD) provides a detailed study of music. Music has been a part of life in Indian culture.  It may be a peasant singing while working, a weaver singing while weaving, or a royal musician singing in front of a king or a devotee singing in the temple. This festival provides an overview of devotional, classical, folk, instrumental, film and modern music systems from India. This festival is conceived by music Gurus Seema Kasthuri and her husband Prasanna Kasthuri.

Festival presents works of great poet-composers like Narsi Mehta from the state of Gujarat, who devoted his life to create beautiful works on relationships of metaphysics and nature. His songs are sung even after 500 years of his passing away. Punjab is the land of Sikh faith. Keertans are devotional hymns sung in praise of the saint Gurunanak and his spiritual work - Granth Saheeba. Bhai Sohan Singh and his two musicians will present the beautiful renditions of Keertans. Saint Chaitanya was a preacher from Bengal in 15th century, his followers took the path of selfless service. Founder of ISCKON followed this great saint and spread the essence of simple living. ISCKON center participates with its team presenting Bhajan music with full orchestra. Sai center presents the songs of baba who promoted universal brotherhood.  Annamacharya was a saint poet from state of Andhra Pradesh, who lived in 16th century. He created numerous compositions in Telugu language. A group led by Phani, owner of Paradise restaurant, will be presenting the beautiful melodies from 16th century. Devaranamas are 15th century Kannada language poems. These devaranamas speak about social inequalities, injustices of medieval India. Team led by Mythili Rochan and other Sangama members will present these songs, reflecting the progressive minds which defied discriminations.

Sanskrit and Tamil are the oldest languages in the World. Tamil’s great work Thirupuzhal (15th century) will be presented by a group of Tamil people led by Balachandra and Vidya Anand. Sant Tukaram and Naamdev created a social revolution in Maharashtra in 17-18th century defying the age old caste system. They preached oneness among all human beings. Their songs are called Abhangs. A group of musicians led by Deepali and Kalpana will present Abhang Gayan.

Music in India is well researched in both rhythm and melody aspect. Distinctive approach of musical elements are clearly seen in two classical music system – Carnatic music from south India and Hindustani Music from north India. St. Louis’s leading Carnatic musician Seema Kasthuri will be presenting complex melodies with creativity of spontaneous notes and improvisation rhythm-less expansion of melody. She will present Kharaharapriya (Dorian) as main melody in the music festival with Kartik Balachandran on violin and Shivananda on Mrudanga. Dancer and musician Prasanna Kasthuri will be presenting a new approach to Carnatic music by using new poetry through an ancient music. He is applying old methods of singing to 21st century Kannada poems. Well known Guitarist Todd Mosby will be presenting Hindustani music. He represent the Etawa Gharana of Ustad Imrat Khan. He will be accompanied on Tabla by Partha Karmakar. He will be elaborating on raagas from north India. Nithya Sai Ganesh will present a concert with ancient Indian instrument – Veena. Soorya Music School will be presenting the Sanskrit, Telugu songs pertaining to Carnatic music. Upcoming stars like Priya Kanna, Akshara, Sapthaka will be singing in this event.


Music of India has changed a lot since the days of traditional music. Influence of west has led to creation of Bollywood. Bollywood imbibed the qualities of Indian folk, traditional, Brazilian, Jazz and other world music genres. Falgun Dave presents popular singer Kishore Kumar’s song through “Yadein”. Jagadambika Mathur will present Ghazals (Romantic Songs) reflecting the influence of Islam in Indian music.

The music festival will feature a closing performance called – “Mera Bharath Mahan” with multiple languages to showcase the depth, variety and entertaining qualities of Indian music.

Soorya Dance Company will be presenting a unique dance performances based on 15th century poems led by famous dancers Samanvita, Sadhana, Mounica and others.

Admission is free for all three days. This event is partially sponsored by Missouri Arts Council.

Location Gandhi Center


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