Bengaluru musicians unite to bring hope amidst lockdown

Watching Andrea Bocelli perform online in an empty cathedral for Easter 2020 got Biji Koshy thinking about the perseverance of man in the face of calamity. He wondered if he could emulate the inspiring notion, but when he got down to it, it involved more than a single tenor accompanied by a pianist.

In an exchange of ideas with Bhaskar Rao, Commissioner of Police, Bengaluru, Koshy who is on the board of directors with the Prestige Group decided to rope in singers and musicians in an attempt to capture the never-say-die attitude of mankind when confronted with a catastrophe or more specifically, COVID-19.

It resulted in the Global Concert of Hope 2020 featuring 33 performances by 191 artistes, taking around 35 days to get the almost two-hour video ready for viewers.

“Though the virus has created a sense of anxiety and depression in all of mankind, hope still prevails. The Concert of Hope 2020 is an attempt to raise spirits and spread a message of hope,” says Koshy, adding that humanity has united in their fight against the pandemic.

The concert spans multiple genres with original compositions and golden oldies sharing space with Indian folk, gospel and popular ballads in English, Hindi, Kannada and Tamil. The video includes words of encouragement by the Commissioner and Irfan Razack, Managing Director of the Prestige group, as well as instrumental interludes on the veena and harmonica. A Kashmiri song by Sufistication and a dance number by the Kiara Dance Academy are surprise additions to the concert.

Joshua Lance who directed the video says, “People from different parts of the country have made Bengaluru their home and it was important to have a representation of various regional languages in the concert.”

“The committee for the Global Concert of Hope sent invites to artistes via word of mouth and those who were able to participate in the concert under lockdown conditions, did so. We recorded with limited equipment all the while adhering to distancing norms. It was both challenging and fun,” he adds.

Bengaluru’s music lovers are bound to recognise some of the most-loved voices and faces of the city in this video which draws to a close with a rendition of the National Anthem and a tribute to Mahatma Gandhi.

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Printable version | Aug 3, 2021 11:42:53 PM |

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