Wednesday, February 8

On maiden visit, Berklee band brings world music to Kolkata

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Besides being a performing artist or a composer, is there any other career option for a music enthusiast in the city? “Music therapy,” came the answer from Annette Philip, founder of the Indian Ensemble of the Berklee College of Music, who was on her maiden visit to the city on Saturday.

A multi-talented musician/producer, Philip founded Berklee’s popular Indian Ensemble in 2011. The ensemble has garnered over 76 million views on YouTube. “On Berklee’s YouTube channel, 46% views are from India,” said Philip, the artistic director of Berklee India Exchange.

She has brought along a vocal ensemble, Women of the World, for a workshop and concert. “Usually we bring India to the world at Berklee. This is our chance of bringing the world to India. That means doing tours, residencies, workshops and create content as we collaborate. Every year, we bring a different team. This time, we got a vocal ensemble,” she said. The choice was a band, with Ayumi Ueda (Japan), Giorgia Renosto (Italy) and Debo Ray (USA/Haiti), that performs in 32 languages. They will be joined by guest drummer Patrick Simard (Canada). “On Sunday, we will sing a Bengali song with Anupam Roy,” Philip said.

Elaborating on music therapy degree, Berklee India Exchange programme’s assistant manager Rohit Jayaraman said, this was not to be confused with playing music to sooth the nerves. “Our students work with stroke patients, terminally ill patients and premature babies,” she said.

Clint Valladares, managing director of Berklee India Exchange, added Apple hired the most number of Berklee alumni. “That’s because musicians are out-of-the-box thinkers, entrepreneurs. The Indian Ensemble is doing film scores,” he said. Philip and Valladares hope to explore opportunities to tie up with city’s music schools and start teacher training.

Source: Times of India

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