Catch up with the maestros over a cup of steaming coffee

CELEBRITY CHAT: Carnatic vocalist Aruna Sairam interacting with rasikas in Chennai on Saturday.   | Photo Credit: — Photo: R.Ragu

Staff Reporter

Global Carnatic Music Association facilitates interaction

CHENNAI: It was over hot cups of coffee and snacks that rasikas listened to Carnatic vocalist Aruna Sairam sing Arunagirinathar’s ‘Naadhabindu kalaadheena namo namo’ and let it effortlessly dissolve into an ancient Gregorian chant on Saturday.The musician interacted with rasikas at the ‘Carnatic Celebrity Coffee Chat – Sangeetha Sandippu” organised by Global Carnatic Music Association in the city. She also shared a few tips on voice culture.

Asked about the worst and best comments that she has received, she said they have always been about her voice. “People would openly comment about my voice and also about the choice of songs. But I took each of them in good taste and worked on improving my voice.” A book with details of diet restrictions and voice exercises practiced by Mahavaidhyanatha Sivan came as an eyeopener, Ms. Sairam said. “I then had the opportunity to meet a famous opera coach who helped me and, after a lot of trial and error, I have fans now telling me they are enchanted by my voice.”

Additional Solicitor General of India Mohan Parasaran, who inaugurated the chat series, asked what the musician thought about the Mumbai terror attacks. She replied, “Anguished by the attacks, I began questioning myself what we as musicians could do about it. Carnatic music has a lot of bhakti (devotion) in it and it would stir anybody’s heart. So what we need to do is make generations of Carnatic music lovers, who will not take to violence,” she said. Musician K.N. Shashikiran, who along with vocalist Sudha Raghunathan founded the Global Carnatic Music Association last year, moderated the programme on Saturday. The interactive sessions with musicians every day, till December 31, will be held from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. at Sangeetha Fast Foods, R.A. Puram. Free passes to the event are available at the venue at 11 a.m. everyday.