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NSPA Sundowner 2016: An Evening of Unadulterated Entertainment

Thursday, May 19th, 2016

Has the stifling summer heat and rather monotonous week at office left you feeling quite down? Fret not friends, for the NSPA has something amazing lined up for you, something that is sure to give you a mood boost that will last at least a week!

We’re talking about our ‘Sundowner 2016’ event, organized by the wonderful and welcoming Marico Evenings. Yes, it’s that fabulous event the Bandra West Residents Association (BWRA) organizes every year with us to enliven the Carter Road Amphitheatre area. If you happened to be part of the event last year, you’ll know how exciting the evening was. For those who weren’t there however, here’s all that you can hope to look forward to.

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Independent Artists showcasing their Talent

We all know about the Rahmans and Sonu Nigams and Coldplays of the world, but little do we realize that there might be some really talented performers in the building next to us, or in the college our child goes to. Many such incredibly talented, but not yet famous artists join the NSPA to earn, hone their talent and garner an audience. These are the artists who’ll be taking the stage and trust us when we tell you that they’re really talented! So, if you’re in the mood to experience some experimental music, performed by fresh faces, you have to attend this event!

Tried and tested is Good, but we’ve Got New Music Too!

Yes, familiar songs will be performed so that you can sing along to the classics. However, it doesn’t stop there because our artists like to showcase their own compositions and musical experiments. So, be prepared to experience some fresh renditions, from a chorus being sung differently to an original composition, there’s a lot of newness to look forward to!

There’s something for everyone

Maybe you’re a Sufi music lover, or you like the energy of a good ol’ Punjabi classic. Maybe retro hits get your groove on or instrumental melodies are what you’re partial towards, no matter the genre, we’re sure to have something for you. From mashups to medleys to nothing but pure music, our event promises a potpourri of musical genres and styles, waiting to be consumed by an open-minded listener.

Oh, there’s something for theatre lovers too, did we mention that?

Who says the Good things in Life aren’t free?

Well, this event surely is! Yes, no passes, no cover charges, no entry fees of any kind. All you need to do is find a chair and plonk down. (If it’s crowded, hang around in the vicinity.) Your love for music is your entry card, for that’s all our performers need!

An unmatchable Ambience

You can hear the rush of the waves as they charge towards their sandy destination, the crash as they explode on the sandy shore and a gentle hum as they retreat into the beautiful blue expanse from where they came. A setting sun rapidly changes colour, bathing everything beneath it in its changing hue. Amidst all this you can hear music, mellifluous and moving, filling your heart with joy and your soul with purpose. Can there be anything better than this?

So, here’s your chance to be part of something really amazing, and we hope you don’t miss it. Come attend NSPA Sundowner 2016, presented by Marico Evenings, at Carter Road Amphitheatre on the 28th of May, 6 pm onwards. We want you to sample this musical treat!

Also, here’s a look at our performances from last year.

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Drum Diaries: What are ‘Drum Circles’ all about?

Tuesday, April 7th, 2015

The sound of drumbeats is enchanting, it’s a sound our body is all too familiar with. Place your hand on your chest and you’ll know what I’m talking about. From ancient times, drums have been used to create music, rhythmic beats that have sometimes summoned the Gods, sometimes called attention towards lurking predators and sometimes, created an atmosphere fitted for celebration or mourning. Even today, we rely heavily on drumbeats for the creation of music. And aren’t they just wonderful? Those thumping rhythms can really fill the atmosphere with life and make us want to jump off our seats and head towards the dancefloor.

Imagine what it would sound like if a group of musicians, equipped with various kinds of percussion instruments sat in a cluster and created music only with these beats. Beginning with a faint rumble, the beats grow louder and louder till the symphony reaches fever pitch, and the booming, thunderous sound of different beats played in tandem fill the atmosphere. This is what you would experience if you ever got a chance to be a part of a ‘Drum Circle.’

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Image courtesy: drumbus

A drum circle is nothing but a group of people who come together and create music using percussion instruments. This circle may consist of trained drummers or amateurs. Sometimes, especially in community or therapeutic drum circles, even those who have absolutely no experience in playing are invited to join. In a typical drum circle, one finds a variety of percussion instruments like drums, Cajons, tablas, djembes or even simple instruments like shakers, bells or wood blocks.

To get a better understanding of drum circles and what they sound like, check out this video: NSPA Drum Circle

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Our NSPA artists formed a drum circle to entertain the audience at ‘Marico Evenings’

So, what’s so great about these musical circles? Well, they are perfect examples of collaborative creativity, because every person in the circle is given the space and freedom to express his rhythmic spirit through his instrument. Yet, all players are constantly in touch with the fundamental groove or the pulse of the group and strive to keep their rhythms in line with these beats. Each player tries to merge his rhythms with the groups’ and avoids being too loud or obtrusive. Hence, one has to listen as much as one plays. The result is harmonious, rhythmic music, a well-rehearsed song, although many individuals play different instruments simultaneously.

So, if you ever get a chance to be a part of such a drum circle, would you participate willingly? Well, you must for it’ll surely be a once in a lifetime experience! However, just remember to feel the pulse of the group, and once you imbibe it, go with the beats your hands come up with for you can trust your body to know exactly what to play!

NSPA brings Indie Power to Marico Evenings!

Tuesday, March 24th, 2015

After days of anticipation and excitement, the mega music event, ‘Marico Evenings’ finally happened. The setup was beautiful. A colorful backdrop dressed the stage and rows of multi-colored lights set the mood for the evening. As the sun continued its downward march, the seats began to fill up, and as if competing with that great ball of fire, the audience seemed to want to fill the venue before the sun could make a graceful exit. They sure did succeed, for within minutes, every chair was occupied! Ones who couldn’t find a seat chose to watch the performances standing, and soon, a thick, snake-like line began to form around the venue.

The evening kicked off with a bang with our theatre enthusiasts, ‘Natakwale,’ presenting a thought-provoking drama. Their play tackled an issue that has been a cause for much concern of late; the safety of women in society. Through witty dialogues laced with a generous dose of sarcasm, they forced us to question and rethink some of the misogynistic attitudes we hold towards women. They also appealed to the audience to be more vigilant regarding the issue of women’s safety while also suggesting measures women could take in order to protect themselves better.

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To liven up the atmosphere and infuse melody into the thoughtful silence that followed the play, our next performers, 9 Beat, took to the stage. Armed with their simple instruments which included a flute, a guitar and a djembe, this team of three serenaded the audience with their harmonious instrumental compositions. A sense of calm permeated the atmosphere and you couldn’t help but close your eyes and relax as the melodious notes washed over your senses.

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After this soothing performance, it was time to bring on an interesting mix, a performance that blended Middle Eastern and Western musical influences. While the guitarist strummed gently and sang popular English numbers, a deftly played tabla kept time to his strumming, delivering the right beats at the right time.

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Next, it was time for some Sufi music and who better to give us this soulful treat than the very popular RAM-Trio. They took to the stage and belted out some popular numbers like ‘Piya Re,’ ‘Allah ke Bande Haste,’ and ‘Dama Dum Mast Kalandar.’ Their heartfelt, poignant performance appealed not just to the senses but to the soul too and one could feel the magic of Sufi music take over.

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Up next was a performance that presented a mix of styles. From Uttarakhandi folk to Uttarbhartiya folk to Punjabi folk to Lavani, One Nation, One Music presented an eclectic mix of styles that kept the audience enthralled and energized. One couldn’t help but clap to the beat and sing along!

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We reached the end of the evening and what better way to conclude an event as energetic as this than by another power-packed performance! The Drum Circle, a band that creates rhythmic music using percussion instruments like the cajon, djembe, dhol, tabla and symbols were called upon to deliver this spirited closing. And did they wow the audience! One could see feet tapping and heads nodding everywhere. The reverberating beats seemed to energize the audience and they began to cheer with newfound vigor and enthusiasm. Way to go Drum Circle!

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Finally, it was time to bid adieu to the audience and thank them for their support. However, before we could sign off, our artists were treated to a happy surprise. To congratulate and thank them for their fabulous performances, a certificate of appreciation was awarded to them on behalf of Marico Evenings! How cool is that!

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For more photographs from the evening, check out the ‘Marico Evenings‘ album on Facebook.

Marico Evenings | Free Music Gig | 22nd March

Tuesday, March 17th, 2015

Picture this:

A slowly setting sun infuses a gorgeous golden-orange tint in the sky. It’s a peaceful evening and the trees sway gently to the rhythm of the winds. There’s an open air stage in front of you, beautifully illuminated by lights, growing brighter and brighter as darkness takes over. From the stage emanates music, moving, entrancing music that sucks you in, mind and soul, and transports you to another time, when Sufi saints walked the earth, or to a another place, where festive folk music lures vibrantly-dressed dancers into swaying to its echoing rhythms. Wouldn’t you love to experience something like this?

Well actually, you can, at Marico Evenings! NSPA brings to you Marico Evenings, a talent-filled evening designed to delight music and drama lovers. Scheduled to be held at the Carter Road Amphitheater on 22nd March, this event offers an amazing lineup of gifted artists who deliver some flawless, inspiring performances. From Sufi rock performances, to upbeat folk songs, to witty plays with eye-opening messages to harmonious instrumental pieces, this event offers an eclectic mix of performances that are sure to captivate even the most scrupulous connoisseurs of creativity.

RAM Trio

Still not motivated to attend the event? Here’s another reason why you should. All the artists performing at the event are independent artists, who have chosen to work their way up the ladder by self-tutoring themselves or by using the training they’ve received in the most innovative ways possible. So, you’re sure to be treated to some brilliant compositions and renditions. Revel in this creativity and have an eventful, wonderful Sunday!

And yes, don’t forget to bring family and friends along!

Check out the poster for details regarding artists and performance timings.

Marico Evening

Marico Evening