A musical blend!

Debarati Palit Singh
Tuesday, 19 March 2019

Chatting up classical vocalist Ujwal Nagar, who will be participating in a musical collaboration, to be held in the city on Thursday evening

Musicians from India and France are coming together to create something beautiful in the city. Shades of Sounds, the concert taking place at Kalachhaya Cultural Centre on Thursday evening, will have an interesting trio performing — Indian classical vocalist Ujwal Nagar, French accordionist Noé Clerc and tabla player Zaheen Khan.

The show has been organised by Alliance Française de Pune, in association with Kalachhaya Cultural Centre and Kala Setu, to celebrate the festival of Holi. The purpose of this collaboration is to promote South Asian traditional performing arts and exchanges between Indian and French artists. It is a platform to promote young promising musicians of all genres, Indian and French, through residencies, concerts and workshops. 

Talking about the programme, Nagar says, “The concept is an initiative by Kala Setu under the project Inchorus, where they invite French musicians to collaborate with Indian musicians. Through this, musicians find a common ground and compose music.”

The programme will have a brief classical solo by Nagar, followed by Clerc’s solo performance and 45 minutes group performance which will include compositions the trio has worked on. 

Nagar adds that three days before their first performance in Delhi on March 15, they got to jam together. The trio also performed at Chennai and Bengaluru. “We heard each other’s music and style to gain a better understanding of our work. We have tried to improvise through the collaboration. The style of music is different like Indian classical music is scale and raga based. So we worked on how to connect the Indian classical music with their music. We worked on the 12 common notes,” he says, adding, “I hope the audience will like our efforts.”

Nagar says there were apprehensions in the beginning, because they were not familiar with each other. “The language and music is different. But if the people are good and some sort of chemistry develops, then the music works out well. In this case, Clerc is not only a good human being but he is also open to ideas. We bonded immediately after we met and we got to know each other well. We worked as team players,” he says. 

The Delhi-based vocalist adds, “In Hindustani music, we cannot improvise outside the scale, so the effort was to find a common scale or raga while performing together. We did not want to compromise on their style nor did we want to go against our musical traditions. There is a lot of give and take during the performance. We had to retain our individuality while collaborating. I think such collaborations contribute immensely to a musician’s growth.” 

Catch the musical programme on March 21, from 7 pm onwards at Kala Chhaya Campus, Kalachhaya Cultural Centre, opp Vikhe-Patil School, off S B Road

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