Pt. Viswa Mohan Bhatt Live in Concert at Calcutta International Classical Guitar Festival 2011

Pandit Viswa Mohan Bhatt & Subrata Bhattacharya
Pandit Vishwamohan Bhatt & Subrata Bhattacharya

Pandit Viswa Mohan BhattCalcutta, Jan 4, 2012 (Washington Bangla Radio / Penning Creations): From December 29 till January 4, Kolkata will be gifted with memorable concerts by the leading classical guitarists worldwide, as the Calcutta International Guitar Festival 2011 gets started with all the right chords and beats!

Supported by the Siddha and Bikram Ghosh, the concert got its way amidst much fan-fare, lauded by enthusiastic followers and maestros alike.

ICCR auditorium hosted the festival’s first concert in the evening of December 29. Pt. Viswa Mohan Bhatt, the Grammy Award Winning, Mohan Veena player accompanied by Subrata Bhattacharya on the Tabla and Somnath Roy on the Ghatanm captivated the audience in his rhythmic and soulful tunes.

A glimpse into his prowess at playing the instrument (created by Pandit Ji himself) was followed by a medley with Subrata and Soham, took up quite a few minutes of the hour long concert, or may be more than that. We’re not quite sure! The mesmerizing chords that the veteran struck transported us into a different world altogether where all sense of time and place is lost. What is left is just the echo of the tunes playing strange games with our already hypnotized mind.

And, there isn’t a word of exaggeration in this. The fortunate witnesses to the legend’s performance were too awestruck to even utter a word of amazement! There was a stunned silence in the auditorium interrupted once in a while, when someone would let out a “Waah-Waah!” in reverence and appreciation of the sheer genius - exuded through the compositions.


A Picture Slide-Show from the Festival

As if Pandit Ji hadn’t done enough to amaze us, he took to replicating the melodious songs of bird – (frequenters in his Jaipur home-tree!). Indeed seven strings of the Mohan Veena can create magic if they’re made to!

Followed by a dedicational composition, Pandit Ji treated the audience with a track from his Grammy Award Winning composition, ‘A Meeting by the River’. And the last one, mind you, was played on request. It was as if no one in the auditorium was willing to let go of even a few precious seconds of his ethereal performance.

The highpoint would definitely be the time when he involved the audience to sing along with the tunes of his Mohan Veena. It was nothing though, in comparison to the forty-fifty thousand strong audience that had already hummed along at the World Music Festival Copenhagen.

For the millions of his fans, Pandit Ji is an inspirational figure and a representative of the few classical musicians left around the world - believing more in live concerts than in pre recorded music. Perhaps, it’s by virtue of this sincere belief that the Grammy Award Winning Album, ‘A Meeting by the River’ would be the one recorded live, in a church with, “no retakes….no editing… and in a natural ambiance”.

And it’s this purity of his musical compositions that comes across to both the know-alls and ignorant listeners (like us, maybe!), in the same magnitude - as we find ourselves lost in his melodies

Check out our exclsuive pictures from the international guitar festival.

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