As members of the Georgia Tech organization Aarohi, we seek to increase our fellow students’, faculty’s, and local community’s awareness of Indian classical music. To this end, we are putting together a music festival event called Khayaal. Khayaal, an Urdu word meaning thought or imagination, as well as the name of a vocal genre of North Indian classical music, is a celebration and showcase of the vibrant variety of musical styles and cultures that India has to offer. In recognition and spirit of Georgia Tech’s efforts to prove that arts such as music can “flourish” and “inspire” in the midst of our highly technological campus, Khayaal aims to spread awareness and appreciation of Indian classical music to students at Tech. To this effect, we will provide a platform for the youth of Atlanta trained in Indian classical music to demonstrate their knowledge and skills in vocal and instrumental performance.
In the Metro-Atlanta area alone, there exist more than twenty music schools devoted to passing on the venerated songs and traditions of Indian classical music. However, the Indian music represented on the Atlanta stages consist mainly of mainstream genres such as Bollywood music. We at Aarohi hope that Khayaal will help address this discrepancy by increasing the Atlanta public’s and Georgia Tech’s awareness of Indian classical music.
Indian classical music can be divided into two overarching styles: Hindustani, prevalent in the north, and Carnatic, prevalent in the south. Typically, each style is performed independently, with separate events and audiences for each style. This separation often precludes the wholesome and rich experience of listening to both styles in the same setting. We believe that through Khayaal, we can provide youth with a forum for performing both Hindustani and Carnatic music, thereby uniting the two styles of music under one roof, bringing exposure to Indian classical music, and giving budding talent the opportunity to shine. We also plan to invite two feature artists who have studied each style of music for many years and who are well-known throughout the Indian classical music community in Atlanta. This will enable the audience to watch and listen to a full range of skill levels and complexity as the performances progress, culminating in demonstrations of true mastery.
This event will be held on Saturday, November 16th, 2013. We believe that this event will appeal to both students at Tech and members of the Indian community at large. We hope that those those with little prior experience will find this event an effective introduction to Indian classical music, while those with more experience will find this event an excellent showcase of Atlanta's diverse musical talent.