Nov 29, 2009

This month we performed a couple of very well organized concerts and thought we would share our experience about them.

The annual music festival organized by Ganjam in Bangalore was a copy book of how a concert should be organized. Right from choosing the right hall (The Chowdiah hall), excellent sound system with an able sound engineer to man it, seating, back stage arrangements, stage décor, hospitality,…….. everything was in place. This concert was a memorable concert for me in more ways than one. Kudos to the Ganjam family and every individual who have contributed to the high quality concert presentation.

I would call all the above mentioned factors as providing the right ambience which is vital to presenting a classical concert. On a subconscious level, the artistes on stage would be affected by the ambience, and this will definitely dictate the mood and quality of the performance.

During every December music season, we get invited to perform from roughly twenty five organizers out of which a couple of them would be sabhas which would be hosting the music festival for the first time. I am not sure if it is a healthy trend to have a sabha in every small neighbourhood. This would in fact lead to dilution in the quality of the concerts and would result in spreading the existing resources very thin. Is not high quality presentation of a handful of concerts better than scores of concerts indifferently organized? I am sure that in time to come, the audience will seek and demand better facilities which will result in sabhas organizing themselves better and upgrading their existing infrastructure.

My wish list:

Every hall should be acoustically sound with comfortable seats and back stage amenities.

A top notch sound system in place with a sensitive and knowledgeable sound engineer.

Ample parking facility, this is very vital in metros and major towns. Invariably, before a concert we would find a big queue of cars outside the gate of the sabha premises, and the passengers arguing vehemently to be let inside and watchmen helplessly standing there not knowing what to do which would lead t traffic jams in front of the sabha. We have had to, on a few occasions, trek down from the gate to the green room, lugging our instruments and other paraphernalia. However, some leading sabhas have provided alternate parking facility within close proximity of the sabha premises which is a welcome and noteworthy effort.

A simple and pleasing stage décor, and good lighting to provide the right ambience for the concert.

I am indeed looking forward to the season concerts, they are just round the corner…..