Slow summers in Delhi with hot winds and sultry skies are legion : to alleviate summer travails Teamwork swung into action and produced a gem of an idea with music soirees to melt the night away ! Under the Banyan tree on a moonlit night is our panacea for all summer blues
The magnificent decades old banyan tree with trailing boughs and roots beneath the waxing moon creates the magical ambience for the melodies and rhythms of near forgotten baithaks, with gentle Hindustani vocals : haunting notes of the Sarangi and the Sitar and of course the feisty Quawwali .
Combined with food and alcohol the mehfil provides key ingredients for a comfortable evening for the discerning music aficionado and the enthusiastic novice to experience and absorb the age old lyric of Bulle shah and Kabir to understand the intricacies of the Khayal and Thumri and to step into the limitless spectrum of our ancient musical traditions. And by the way young artistes like Ahsan Ali and Ujwala Nagar are experimenting with new sounds and compositions bringing traditional melodies of the Sarangi and Khayal Gayiki to younger audiences through fusion and world music !
Baithaks by definition imply an intimacy with the music and the artiste ! curated with a contemporary edge, the generous space has the customary low seating with comfortable bolsters and a spread of traditional love seats, chairs and tables plumped with cushions under the odd curtained gazebo. Subtle lighting and breezy conversation spaces combine to create a setting of simplicity and comfort .
The audience was generous in their appreciation for a space to reconnect with our age old musical legacy : the musical soirees have found a deep resonance with an audience out there and we think we are here to stay !