The reality TV show “American Idol” has triggered a new trend – Idol search! TV channels all over the world are searching for idols – or talents. This search is not only limited to the television screen, but it has also proliferated onto the stage in various forms. Although the primary objective of this kind of shows is to screen for talent, in reality (excuse the pun) it is nothing but an entertainment show. The excitement, the drama, and the occasional emotional outbursts, are all part of the show. Undoubtedly, such shows do bring many talented men, women and children to the limelight, but is this the right way to do explore talent? In many cases, the exploration turns to exploitation – especially for the young participants. They have to go through a grueling screening process, sustain a tremendous pressure to perform, and then handle a barrage of criticism from the celebrity judges. I know in one dance show, a young girl couldn’t take the judges criticism anymore and had a nervous breakdown resulting in a paralytic fit. In several instances the young competitors sacrifice their education to continue the show. But the tragedy is, in most cases the winner is not judged by the celebrity panel whose criticism these young participants have to encounter, but rather by the audience through cell/mobile phone text messages (SMS). And in this process, the wireless carrier mints money. I am sure the show also gets their share of this income too.
After a long preparation phase, the end is now in sight. In two weeks time, ECTA will be launching their latest production, “Banaprastha” or “The Retirement”. ECTA’s play have always generated interest amongst the theater lover audience of this area and “Banaprastha” is no exception. People are eagerly waiting for the new play with lot of expectation. We hope this play will live up to that.
“Banaprastha” will feature some of the regular performers of ECTA along with few new faces. Shamyo Goswami, a newcomer to New Jersey will be appearing for the first time on NJ stage. Although Shamyo’s primary interest is in film direction (he has directed and produced a Banga Tele-serial featuring some of the top actors of Bengali screen), he is also an excellent actor. Subhodev Das, after a long hiatus, will be performing the role of the protagonist character – Dr. Parijat Sen. Another newcomer is Pradeep Ramdas. Although not a native Bengali speaker, his love for Bengali theater is no less than any Bengali. In India, Pradeep was involved with the street theater movement. Pradeep plays the role of Ashok Diwan, a young business man of Kolkata. Kaninika Dutta’s debut in New Jersey theater was with Pratham Alo, where she acted in the key role of Bhumisuta. Kaninika, after a long break, returns to the stage as Sudeshna. Gargi Mukherjee, the well known actress (you cannot miss her in Mira Nair’s film – The Namesake) also returns to an ECTA production after a long time. She performed in ECTA’s first production “Phera” (The Return) in 2004 as a guest artist. In Banaprastha, she performs in the role of Suranjana – a character that will touch the hearts of many. Kaushik Dutta, who won the hearts of many with his role of Nando in “Ron”, will also feature in an important character role.
The Mason Gross School of Arts at the Rutgers University in New Jersey is opening up a whole new department of Indian Dance and Music. The program is being introduced with a concert of Indian music and dance on Sunday, June 28th from 2 to 3.45 p.m. at Nicolas Center, Cook Douglass Campus, Rutgers University, NJ featuring most of the faculty. The concert will be followed by a summer camp from Monday June 29th through Friday July 3rd with a daily schedule covering 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The program is headed by Samir Chatterjee. The faculty includes:
Archana Joglekar Muley, Kathak
Arun Ramamurthy, Violin
Bani Roy, Odissi
Dibyarka Chatterjee, Percussion
Hidayat Khan, Sitar
Kalyani Ramani, Carnatic vocal
Kedar Naphade, Harmonium
Mitali Banerjee Bhawmik, Hindustani vocal
Samir Chatterjee, Tabla
Sanghamitra Chatterjee, Popular vocal
Steve Gorn, Bansuri
Sudha Devulapalli, Bharatanatyam
Suresh Ramachandram, Mridangam
Samir Chatterjee will teach rhythm and yoga in addition to leading the audio-visual and discussion sessions.
A Musical Odyssey : Journey through history and Genres
A unique mehfil celebrating the diversity of raagdari and folk music from India’s different regions. Our journey will take us across India’s landscape, stopping at points of interest from the Himalayan Highlands to the backwaters of Kerala, from the havelis of Rajasthan to the flowing waters of Bengal, as distinguished artists perform the music of their heritage.
Ghazals, Bhajans, Taranas, Tillanas, Folk, Thumris, Dhrupad, Khayal, Kirtans, and more –
Dr. Mohan Deshpande
November 9, 2008, 4:00pm (sharp)
Hills Highlands Recreation Center/Clubhouse
75 Hansom Road, Basking Ridge, NJ 07920
Tel: (201) 447-6936, (908) 429-1120, (973) 539-5534
Donations of $15/adult & $7/below 18 years of age will be collected at the door. Limited seating, RSVP.
Limited parking at Venue. Street parking is allowed. Please look for the appropriate road signs.
On 16th November, at 3-30 p.m.
Raag- Rang presents a magical evening of
Hindustani classical music, featuring the master of sound magic Steve Gorn on bamboo flute.
Concert will start with two short vocal presentation by Anand Arikarevula
and Smt Girija Iyer accompanied by Shree Amod Dandawate on tabla and Smt
Indrani Chakrabarty Khare on harmonium.
Venue: Universal Unitarian Congragation Of Princeton.
50 Cherry Hill Road, Princeton 08540.
Admission: non-members: $20.00(kids between 5-10 years $10.00).
Members: $15.00 (kids between 5 to 10 years $7.00).
Contact : (732)-241-7063, (609)-890-4890, (908)-240-8289 or
Email firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com,
Cultural Association of Bengal
A gala concert of classical Indian Music
On 13th September 2008, Saturday , 5 P.M.
at Q208, 74-13 commonwealth Blvd, Bellerose, NY 11426
Pt. Tarun Bhattecharya on Santoor accompanied by Abhishek Basu on tabla.
Eminent vocalist Mitali Banerjee Bhawmik, accompanied by Sri Dibyarka Chatterjee on tabla and Sri Kedar Naphade on Harmonium.
Young vocalist Indrani Chakrabarty Khare will be recognized by cultural association of Bengal (C.A.B) for her achievement.
Suggested Donation $20.00, $35.00. Ample free parking inside the school premises.
Contact Number: 718-631-9819, 516-298-2454, 914-277-4662, 732-496-0385, 631-821-5684,
917-518-5484, 718-380-1373, 516-501-1966, 516-232-5124.
Direction: By subway/bus: E or F train to Union Tpk exit. Then Q46 bus to Cross Island Parkway stop. Enter school gate.
By car: (1) Grand Central Parkway (east) to Union Tpk exit. Right turn to Unin Tpk. School entrance between Cross island and commonwealth Blvd.
(2) Grand Central Park way (west) to Little neck PKway. Left Turn to Littleneck PKway. Go under Grand central PKway.Right turn on Littleneck PKway. Right turn again on Union Tpk.
School on right after crossing Commonwealth Blvd.
(3) Long Island Expressway to Littleneck Pky exit. Take Little Neck Pky (South). Go under Grand Central Pky and follow option 2.
Few weeks ago, Lopamudra Mitra presented a concert at the Marlboro High School Auditorium at the invitation of the Dakshineshwar Ramkrishna Sangha Adyapeath (DRSA) of New Jersey. She was touring USA at the invitation of the Bangamela 2008 (held in Columbus OH) and before leaving the country, she made a brief visit to New Jersey. It was Lopamudra’s special attachment to Dakshineshwar Adyapeath that brought her to this fund raising concert. However, the audience response was only lukewarm at best. The torrential downpour before the concert may have contributed to the low attendance, but I think the major reason is the multiple events that are happening all around us during the summer season. Continue reading
AT ANANDA MANDIR Artists of the month
Madhumita will be accompanied on Tabla by her husband, the illustrious
Pandit Samar Saha
On the harmonium, it will be our own and very talented
Sri Kedar Naphade
Who has accompanied all prominent vocalists from India for many years
As you can see, this one will be memorable event presented by ANANDA MANDIR
Please come and share this fabulous musical evening.
As usual, the ANANDA SANDHYA concert is FREE, Children come free. However, your kind donation is always graciously accepted.
Ananda Mandir is located on Cedar Grove Lane off Easton Avenue in Somerset, NJ.
For info, call Arun Bhowmik at 908-672-1452.
On the auspicious occasion of Janmashtami (Sunday, August 24, 2008), Anandamandir will be hosting a four hour long (3.00pm to 7.00pm) event of Bhajans and Bhakti Sangeet.
Musicians are invited to participate (singers, accompanists) in this great event and be a part of the Anandamandir community.
If you would be interested to participate, then please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org by Thursday, July 31, 2008. With your help and support this will be an enchanting evening of Bhajan and Bhakti Sangeet.
It is our great pleasure to have The Famous Rabindra Sangeet Artist Pramita Mallick with us. We are organizing a Sangeet Anushthan for her honor on 20th of july (Sunday) at 5:30 pm. Please come and enjoy the evening with us.
Venue: 112 Monroe Ave, Edison, NJ 08820 (Sharmila & Sandip’s house )
Time: 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm
There will be no ticket for this Anushthan but your willing contribution for the artist will be appreciated.
Please call me if you need anymore information and forward this mail to your friends who are interested.
My phone # 908-4228-6650(home) 908-787-6590 (cell)
Email id email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org