Mangalore AIR to hire young musicians

MANGALORE, MARCH 17. After a gap of nearly two years, the local station of All India Radio is all set to conduct fresh round of selections of talented singers through the "Yuva Sangeeta Prathibe" project. The aim is to expand the talent bank as well as to cater to listeners in Dakshina Kannada and Udupi districts and Kasargod in Kerala.

The station has announced that it will conduct an audition test for candidates between 18 to 30 years. The tests will be conducted by graded artistes of AIR in classical-vocal, instrumental, light songs (bhavageethe), folk and devotional songs category. Those selected will be given the opportunity to sing regularly for AIR Mangalore.

The in-charge Station Director, Vasanth Kumar Perla, told The Hindu here on Thursday that AIR has not conducted such a selection process locally in the past three years for various reasons. Urging interested candidates to apply by March 31, he said AIR will provide an ideal platform for musicians to carve a niche for themselves.

Candidates who are above 30 years will have to vie for slots open to artistes in the general category, he said. "We will take in all those who get through the audition. The emphasis will be on quality," he added.

Old masters' melody

Asked about any change in the programme schedule, Mr. Perla said the station has decided to introduce a new segment — "Old masters' melody" — from April 3. It will be aired every Saturday for an hour from 1.30 p.m. Likewise, an exclusive half-an-hour slot dedicated to classical music will be made available each morning except Saturday from 9.30 a.m., he added.

Mr. Perla said since AIR already has a commitment to broadcasting a sponsored programme during this slot for the next one year, there is likelihood of extending the programme throughout the week once the slot is free.

The introduction of the slot on classical music will entail some changes in the schedules of other programmes. "Suddi Sanchaya," a local news capsule broadcast for five minutes every day from 8.35 a.m., will be shifted to 5.55 p.m. "Korike," a programme dedicated to film music based on listener's requests, will be advanced by five minutes from 8.40 a.m., he said.

This will mean that AIR Mangalore will extend its morning transmission by 25 minutes up to 10 a.m.

"With Korike being restricted to 9.30 a.m. each day, we will get a clear 30 minute slot for our classical music programme," Mr. Perla said.

He said there is a move by select AIR stations in the State to contribute at least four hours of programme to the Kannada radio channel on board Prasar Bharti's "DD Direct +" direct-to-home service.

The station directors concerned will meet shortly to chalk out the details and this should become operational in the next two or three months, he added.

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