Expect a spiritually and aurally uplifting experience when Vikram Hazra and his band perform their melange of oriental and occidental music.
ANCIENT Sanskrit chants set to music will be performed by Vikram Hazra and his band in a once-off Joburg appearance that promises to transcend traditional genre boundaries and uplift the audience.
Vikram Vikram Hazra is performing live in LenasiaAn internationally acclaimed musician, Hazra will perform on 5 May at Gandhi Hall in Lenasia, south of the CBD, which is home to a largely Indian community.
His concerts evoke strong reactions from diverse audiences across the globe. Years of spiritual sadhana – ego-transcending spiritual practice – along with uncompromising attention to tonal crafting and sound design have helped to create Hazra’s unique sound.
“Our style of spiritual music involves sculpting sound in such a way that the listener hears the silence contained within,” he explains.
Hazra’s concerts seamlessly meld diverse styles, from the simplest of Indian folk bhajans, or devotional songs, to the compositions of Adi Shankaracharya, the Indian spiritual philosopher; from Buddhists chants to African and African-American spirituals; from the philosophies of poet-saints to contemporary blues and jazz.
“For over 15 years I have served as the programme director for the International Art of Living Foundation. In the past couple of years I have also taken my music to a professional level, which means that I now make a living from my bhajan concerts.”
Hazra is a writer, philosopher, media producer and social activist. He travels across the world conducting workshops and initiating community development projects that provide basic amenities like safe drinking water, health care and education to underprivileged communities.
“All the satsangs – spiritual seminars – I do for Art of Living projects and centres all over the world are done as seva, which means I do not charge a penny for them. This has helped my colleagues fundraise for several projects and rural schools, and I am proud that my singing has been able to provide not just spiritual solace but also material comfort to underprivileged communities in every part of the world.”
His concerts have drawn crowds of over 25 000 people, and he has performed in over 30 countries, at venues ranging from London’s Bloomsbury Theatre to Johannesburg’s Linder Auditorium. He has also made a host of recordings and has released a range of musical and inspirational CDs.
For his Joburg concert, he will be on vocals as well as play the flute, electric guitar, nylon-string guitar and guitar synthesizer. Shivraj (Mizo) Doss will play the electric and acoustic guitars, keyboards and do arrangements, and Ajay Kadam will perform on the tablas, the traditional Indian drums, and do electronic percussion.
It is at Gandhi Hall at 7pm on 5 May. Tickets cost R180 and can be obtained by contacting Sanjay Mithal on 082 641 6049 or 011 886 0762. For more information, email Mithal on firstname.lastname@example.org.
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