Indian classical music heralds the monsoon months with Malhar, the raag of the rains. But is this a myth perpetuated by age-old musical tradition? Or is there really some intrinsic connection between Malhar and the rains? And what creates the monsoon mood – the lyrics of the compositions or the note combinations? How have the folk melodies of the northern plains – the sawan, kajri, jhoola, hindola and the rest – evolved into the myriad varieties of our semi-classical music celebrating the sawan months? At our Online Talk #RainRaga, classical vocalist and musical educator Dhanashree Pandit-Rai unravels the beauty of the most awaited season of our country – the rains – through speech and song, and helps us discover the wealth of our musical lineage.
About the speaker
Dhanashree Pandit-Rai is an eminent Indian classical vocalist, her specialty being the “Thumri” or semi-classical genre of music. She holds a Master’s degree in music from Mumbai University and has been mentored by Pandit Firoz Dastur, the Kirana Gharana stalwart, and Smt. Shobha Gurtu, the thumri legend. Besides her concerts, she is widely recognized for the lively commentaries that accompany her presentations and enlighten the audiences on the deeper mysteries of Indian music. Dhanashree also conducts workshops on Appreciation of Hindustani music and her talk at the TEDx conference in 2010 on ‘The Essence of Indian Music’ has been widely acclaimed. She has been a visiting lecturer on Thumri at the SNDT University, Mumbai.