MIT-based creative media venture, IndianRaga, concluded its first round of search for the most promising, dynamic artists in Indian classical music today and announced the IndianRaga Fellows for 2013.

IndianRaga co-founder and CEO, Sriram Emani, describes the Fellowship as a cross between a music contest and an academic scholarship. “The Fellows receive an unparalleled opportunity to learn from and network with colleagues and counterparts from other genres — mentors, media critics and audiences, along with pursuing unique collaborative projects with peers.” The IndianRaga Fellows are Akshay Anantapadmanabhan, Anuja Panditrao, Harsha Nagarajan, Hrishikesh Dharam, Kruthi Bhat, Rishikesh Armstrong, Rohan Krishnamurthy, Roopa Mahadevan and Shreehari Raghavan. Fellows are young, enthused artists who have demonstrated an advanced level of training and have performed professionally or semi-professionally and actively seek to build a career in the field. The Fellowship was held in four genres — Hindustani and Carnatic classical, vocals and instrumental and the Fellows went through two online rounds before being chosen.

IndianRaga Fellow, Akshay Padmanabhan says, “The IndianRaga fellowship provides a platform for musicians from different parts of the country to collaborate, learn, conceptualise and implement music. IndianRaga is an initiative that is going to change the way musicians interact with their colleagues and organizations.” “On the one hand is the highly nuanced and subtle art of music making called Raga sangeet and on the other is the world wide web and the possibilities it offers of bringing people together in unimaginable ways. IndianRaga straddles both these worlds in a bold and imaginative initiative by offering a forum for young aspiring musicians to showcase their art to organisers and audiences across the globe,” explained Lakshmi Sreeram, one of few contemporary artists with mastery in both Hindustani and Carnatic music and judge for the IndianRaga Fellowship 2013.

“The IndianRaga Fellowship identifies maestros of the future and equips them with mentorship and skills to catalyze innovation and professional excellence. These Fellows are going to set the standard for Indian performances for decades to come”, said Sree Sreenivasan, co-founder of the South Asian Journalists Association who will be holding a social media workshop for the Fellows. The IndianRaga Fellows will be part of a week-long workshop-cum-concert series during the Drive East festival being held at the La Mama Theater in Downtown Manhattan between August 19 and 25, 2013 with master classes being conducted by Pandit Anindo Chatterjee, G.S. Rajan, Rama Vaidyanathan and Shankar Tucker.

The IndianRaga Fellowship Showcase on Saturday, August 24 at the Drive East festival featured 9 power-packed performances by the Fellows, to a distinguished audience of musicians, music scholars, and audiences.

IndianRaga won the U.S. Creative Business Cup in 2012 and was part of the Global Entrepreneurship Week held in Copenhagen in November 2012. It also won the Community Choice Award at the MIT IDEAS Global Challenge in April 2012.

IndianRaga Fellowship 2014 applications open in November 2014 for North America, please write to fellowship@indianraga.in for more details.

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