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Saregama USA Brings Memorable Mehdi Hasan Tribute Concert Series by Talat Aziz to USA and Canada

Saregama US-Canada Tour of Talat Aziz - Tribute to Ustad Mehdi Hasan

North Brunswick, NJ, Aug 29, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) In what promises to be a remarkable concert series in the United States and Canada, the venerable Saregama record company of India (erstwhile HMV) is organizing live performances by renowned Ghazal exponent Talat Aziz who will pay tribute to his legendary guru Ustad Mehdi Hassan.

The concert series will be held across North America (USA & Canada) over September and October of 2011. Preliminary reports indicate Aziz will perform iconic Ghazals including Rafta Rafta, Zindagi Mein etc. as well as super-hit Ghazhal songs from Bollywood films like Umrao Jaan, Bazaar, Daddy etc.

The shows will also feature North Indian Hindustani Classical instrumental exponents Pt. Ramesh Misra on Sarangi, Rajendra Shankar (brother of Uday, Ravi and Sachin Shankar) on Sitar, and Tabla wizard Ustad Tari Khan from Pakistan.

For more information on schedule, venues and tickets, visit official Saregama USA Events website.

You can listen to free samples and download unforgettable Ghazhals by Ustad Mehdi Hassan and Talat Aziz in MP3 audio format using the player below.

- WBRi Event Announcement Service

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Third Hinduism Summit in Chicago concludes with determined resolve by attendees

Speakers at the Hinduism Summit in Chicago

Chicago, Aug 27, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) On 27th August 2011 the third Hinduism Summit (Hindu Dharmajagruti Sabha) in Chicago concluded successfully at the Hindu Temple of Lake County. Over 100 people, including Hindu parents trying to raise their children as Hindus, non-Hindus interested in Hinduism and Hindu activists, attended this public event, with 45 of the attendees online. The program received very positive feedback, such as, ‘We would like to have this enlightening program at our temple, too’, ‘It provided a rewarding experience, as we listened to the lectures of distinguished personalities’, ‘Questions on Hinduism were answered very well’, etc.

The presentation of Mrs. Bhavna Shinde Hurley (interview), Spokesperson of FHA, drew attention to various issues facing Hindus in America, such as distortion of Hinduism by American academicians, like the recent news about ‘Prof. Sheldon Pollock broadening access to Sanskrit, the language of the elite’, Hindu youth increasingly converting out of Hinduism, anti-Hindu bias in the media, and the rampant trivialization of Hindu Deities. Mrs. Shinde Hurley explained how Hinduism education emphasizing the unique science of Hinduism and its firsthand experience can help us face these challenges successfully. She gave some examples of the spiritual science of Hinduism, such as the red dot (of pure vermillion powder) on the forehead that helps increase concentration and the Agnihotra sacrificial fire that one can perform to gain protection from nuclear radiation. Mrs. Shinde Hurley appealed to all supporters of Hinduism to come together whenever the Hindu community faces a challenge, to respond to it successfully, taking inspiration from the over 1000 Hindus worldwide who recently got the denigrating ‘Sita Sings the Blues’ New York show cancelled by promptly protesting to the organizers.

Dr. Richard Benkin, a leader in the struggle to stop the ethnic cleansing of Bangladesh’s Hindus, in his speech, mentioned a milestone reached in this struggle recently. On July 28, 2011, a US Congressman Robert Dold recognized the oppression of Bangladeshi Hindus on the floor of the United States Congress. Dr. Benkin spoke about the Human Rights Advisory Council he has been asked to lead. He urged everyone to contact their Senators to co-sponsor the bill, HR440, which calls for the appointment of a “Special Envoy to Promote Religious Freedom of Religious Minorities in the Near East and South Central Asia”, and to specifically mention the Bangladeshi Hindus’ persecution. However, he cautioned Hindus to play a prominent role early and even have some voice in who is appointed as Special Envoy to prevent the wrong person being made the Special Envoy. This would help the real issues like the Bangladeshi Hindus' persecution to be investigated while preventing focus on one-sided false charges about Gujarat, Orissa, Palestinians, etc. 

Ms. Kristen Mandziuk of Spiritual Science Research Foundation (SSRF) showed videos of SSRF’s research with dowsing and biofeedback machines to illustrate that subtle distressing forces (aasuri shakti), which obstruct Dharma, are very powerful. The videos further illustrated that to effectively counter these challenges faced by the Hindu community, Hindus will need to gain spiritual strength by doing spiritual practice and by acquiring blessings of Saints who have the divine consciousness to counter the subtle distressing forces.

Ms. Maya Jairam, a native of Colorado, shared her firsthand account of growing up in America. Coming from a non-religious childhood, she was unaware of the spiritual ill effects of the non-vegetarian diet, the benefits of spiritual practice (sadhana), etc. Ms. Jairam found Hinduism’s spiritual science, such as the three subtle components (trigunas) to be fascinatingly clarifying of various aspects of life. It inspired her to become vegetarian and follow a Hindu spiritual path.

Hinduism supporters’ contributions to make this Hinduism Summit happen were commemorated in a beautiful, informative souvenir that was published at the hands of Mr. Prabhakar Joshi, a long time local Hindu activist. The Hinduism Summit concluded with attendees enthusiastically passing resolutions about urging US policy makers to investigate the Bangladeshi Hindus’ persecution, and about not supporting any product, publication or art that denigrates Hinduism.

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Bengali Actress Arunima Ghosh Launches TAGORE.COM Audio Rabindrasangeet Album by Mrinmoy Roy under UD Series in Kolkata

By Aditya Chakraborty

Actress Arunima Ghosh launching Tagore Dot Com
Arunima Ghosh

Mrinmoy Roy & Arunima Ghosh launching Tagore.Com
Mrinmoy Roy & Arunima Ghosh

Kolkata, Aug 18, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Imagine a management professional (and a highly successful person and an ex IIM Kolkata at that!) who pursues an interesting vocation which keeps him more than engaged in his other wise busy life.

Third Hinduism Summit in Chicago

A Hinduism Summit organized by Hindu Temple of Lake County and Forum for Hindu Awakening will be held on August 27 to increase awareness about Hinduism and issues facing Hindus today. There will be insightful presentations, a question answer session, videos and exhibitions at this Summit.

2nd Chevrolet Global Indian Music Academy (GIMA) - Full List of Nominees

Mumbai, Aug 16, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio / PRLog) Nominations for the 2nd Chevrolet Global Indian Music Academy (GIMA) Awards have been announced.

GIMA Academy members - Atul Churamani, Vijay Lazarus  & Others

The Global Indian Music Academy today announced the nominees for the 2nd Chevrolet Global Indian Music Academy (GIMA) Awards. After the phenomenal success of the Awards last year, preparations are underway to hold this year’s celebrations at the Kingdom of Dreams in Gurgaon, late September. Supported by all constituents of the Music industry, GIMA is a pioneering effort by Wizcraft International Entertainment to recognize Indian music transcending genres in the country, whilst giving the music industry a unified platform to celebrate its talent.

Shohortoli Band’s Tour of Calcutta

Editor's Note: Listen to Shohortoli's latest album "Borabor Shohortoli" online from our exclusive feature posted here.

Calcutta, 16th August, 2011 (WBRi/OOBE): Bangladeshi Band Shohortoli will tour Calcutta from 20th December, 2011 to 5th January, 2012. The tour is being organized by BMZ Entertainment.

Bangladeshi Bangla Band Sohortoli in Concert

Usha Uthup to Perform Live at PROBASH PARBONI 2011

Sambad Pratidin presents KKN Probashi Parboni 2011

London, UK, Aug 15, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio)  The organizers of KKN Probashi Parboni 2011 have announced that Kolkata's pop-queen Usha Uthup  (Wbri Interview) will perform live at the event.

Panettieri, Van Dam, Russell Headline Wizard World Los Angeles COMIC CON

American actress Hayden Panettiere at the Hero...

Image via Wikipedia

New York, July 21, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio / PRUrgent) North America’s largest pop-culture tour continues as Wizard World Los Angeles Comic Con comes the Los Angeles Convention Center, September 24-25, with standout guests Hayden Panettiere, Rob Van Dam, Betsy Russell, Walter Koenig, Jeremy Bulloch and Doug Jones headlining the list of celebrity attendees, and guest of honor Mike Deodato Jr. leading a blowout list of superstar artists scheduled to attend. The event will bring together thousands of fans of all ages and dozens of celebrities and industry professionals to celebrate the best in pop-fi, pop culture, movies, graphic novels, comics, toys, video gaming, television, sci-fi, gaming, original art, collectibles, contests and more.

“We are excited to be back in Los Angeles, bringing so many superstar comics artists and celebrities,” said Gareb Shamus, Wizard World CEO. “We're particularly excited about the wide collection of voice actors at Los Angeles Comic Con who have played some of the most memorable characters in the biggest blockbuster animated movies and popular television shows in history.”

Van Dam (WWE, IMPACT Wrestling), Russell (SAW, PRIVATE SCHOOL) and Bulloch (STAR WARS: EPISODE V, VI, III, “Doctors”) will be on site both days, while Panettiere (“Heroes,” BRING IT ON), Koenig (“Star Trek,” “Babylon 5”) and Jones (FANTASTIC FOUR, HELLBOY) are scheduled to appear on Saturday.

In addition to Deodato (“The Amazing Spider-Man,” “Captain America”), among the standout comics creators attending are Rodolfo Migliari (“Green Arrow,” “Green Lantern”), “Jock” (“Detective Comics,” “Batman”), Billy Tan (“Uncanny X-Men,” “X-23”), Gabriel Bá (“The Umbrella Academy,” “Casanova”), Fabio Moon (“Daytripper,” “Casanova”), Humberto Ramos (“Amazing Spider-Man,” “The Spectacular Spider-Man”), Michael Golden (“Spider-Man,” “Hulk”), Yanick Paquette (“Batman,” “Superman”), Judd Winick (“Batman and Robin,” “Power Girl”), Rob Liefeld (“Deadpool,” “Youngblood”), Whilce Portacio (“Artifacts,” “Uncanny X-Men”), Joe Jusko (“Spider-Man,” “Conan”), Bill Sienkiewicz (“Elektra,” “Assasin”), Greg Horn (“Spider-Man: Turn off the Dark,” “Hero For Hire”), Bernie Wrightson (“Swamp Thing,” “Batrman”), Mike Grell (“Green Arrow,” “Green Lantern”), Christos Gage (“X-Men,” “Spider-Man”) and David Mack (“Kabuki,” “Daredevil”).

Other popular celebrity guests scheduled to be on hand at the event include Michael Uslan (Producer, THE DARK KNIGHT RISES), Vanessa Angel (“Stargate SG-1,” “Weird Science”), Tony Curran (“Doctor Who,” “24”), Erika Eleniak (“Baywatch,” ET), Greg Ellis (PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN, TITANIC), Clare Kramer (“Buffy: The Vampire Slayer”), Michael Krawic (“Star Trek: Enterprise,” “Star Trek: Voyager”), Cindy Morgan (TRON, CADDYSHACK), Brittney Powell (“General Hospital”, AIRBORNE) and Keisha Tillis (“The Walking Dead”).

Los Angeles Comic Con also boasts an impressive collection of voice actors of hugely popular characters from numerous movies and television programs. Fans can meet Tony Anselmo (“Mickey Mouse Clubhouse [Donald Duck],” WHO FRAMED ROGER RABBIT, FANTASIA/2000), Jim Cummings (WINNIE THE POOH [Pooh, Tigger], THE LION KING, SHREK), Chris Edgerly (X-MEN, “The Simpsons”), Siobhan Flynn (“Marvel vs. Capcom 3,” “Yoga Wii”), Kyle Hebert (“Marvel vs. Capcom 3,” “The Avengers”), Neil Kaplan (“Optimus Prime,” “Star Craft III”), Phil LaMarr (“Futurama,” “Family Guy”), Katie Leigh (DESPICABLE ME, DUNGEONS & DRAGONS), Jason Marsden (SPIRITED AWAY, A GOOFY MOVIE), Vanessa Marshall (CAPTAIN AMERICA, THE AVENGERS), Alan Oppenheimer (HE-MAN [Skeletor], SHE-RA), Mark Ryan (TRANSFORMERS, DARK OF THE MOON), Rodney Saulsberry (“The Invincible Iron Man,” “Spider-Man”), Susan Silo (LILO & STITCH, ONE UPON A FOREST), Rosearik Rikki Simons (“Invader ZIM,” “NieA under 7”), Don Stark “Spider-Man”), Tasia Valenza (“Star Wars: The Clone Wars,” “Batman”), Jim Ward (WALL-E, TOY STORY 3), Rick D. Wasserman (PLANET HULK, “The Avengers”) and Wally Wingert (“The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” “The Garfield Show”).

Children and adult attendees are encouraged to come dressed as their favorite villain, superhero or pop culture personality for the chance to win special prizes in costume contests. Event-goers may also try their hand interactive product exhibits and shop for collectible comics, movie and television memorabilia, toys and games at a wide variety of dealer booths.

And Sunday, September 25, is Kids Day at Los Angeles Comic Con, with face painting, balloons, a “passport” treasure hunt and other activities designed especially for kids! Other special events include card gaming tournaments, professional photo opportunities (Photo Ops) and more.

Los Angeles Comic Con is the eighth stop on Wizard World's 2011 North American tour. Hours are Saturday, September 24, 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.; and Sunday, September 25, 11 a.m. - 6 p.m. Tickets are available in advance online at at a savings over tickets purchased at the door. Advance adult single-day tickets are priced at $25 ($35 on site); two-day all-session tickets are $40 ($50 on site), and tickets are free for children age 10 and under when accompanied by a paid adult (limit two children per adult). VIP packages with special entry and exclusive items are also available on a limited basis.

Wizard World produces Comic Cons and pop culture conventions across North America that celebrate graphic novels, comic books, movies, TV shows, gaming, technology, toys and social networking. The events often feature celebrities from movies and TV, artists and writers, and events such as premieres, gaming tournaments, panels, and costume contests. Wizard World also produces Wizard World Digital, an online publication covering new and upcoming products and talents in the pop culture world, and is distributed on a weekly basis to online and iPad users worldwide.

The full event schedule can be found at

***** SAVE THE 2011/12 DATES *****
August 11-14, 2011 – Chicago Comic Con
September 24-25, 2011 – Los Angeles Comic Con
October 22-23, 2011 – Mid-Ohio Comic Con
November 11-13, 2011 – Austin Comic Con
January 28-29, 2012 – New Orleans Comic Con
March 24-25, 2012 – Toronto Comic Con
April 28-29, 2012 – Anaheim Comic Con
May 19-20, 2012 – Big Apple Comic Con
June 1-3, 2012 – Philadelphia Comic Con
October 2012 – New England Comic Con
December 8-9, 2012 – Miami Comic Con

- PRurgent

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125 Years Celebration of Kolkata Chapter of Trinity College of Music, London: Rock, Pop, Jazz & "Bollywood" Music Courses Coming

By Aditya Chakraborty

Students performing at 125th Year celebration of Trinity College of Music, Kolkata
Students of Trinity College of Music, Kolkata performing at the 125th year celebration event

Sarah Kemp, Chief Executive, Trinity College London, Jyotishka Dasgupta, Eastern India Representative, Trinity Kolkata Chapter
A student being awarded by Sarah Kemp, Chief Executive, Trinity College London. Jyotishka Dasgupta, Eastern India Representative, Trinity Kolkata Chapter is on her left.

Calcutta, Aug 7, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) The Kolkata chapter of the Trinity College of Music completed it’s glorious journey of 125 years with a function to mark the occasion at an event at Kala Mandir on Saturday.

Trinity which has a long history as a school of music and drama in various disciplines has it’s chapters all over the world and also in many cities of India and it is only fitting that other than Mr.Jyotishka Dasgupta, Regional Head, Eastern Region, Kolkata Chapter of Trinity College of Music, the entire team of Trinity including M.H.Das, the National Manager of Trinity College of Music, Ms. Sarah Kemp, Chief Executive Trinity College London, Mr.Nick Keyworth, Chief Examiner for Music, Trinity College London and Mr. John Gardyne, Chief Examiner for Drama & Speech, Trinity College London were all present to grace the occasion. Ms.Sujata Sen,Director, Eastern India,  British Council was the Guest of Honour.

Speaking on the cassion, Mr.Jyotishka Dasgupta said that it has been seen in recent years that the trend of pursuing Western Classical music has gone up by leaps and bounds. Many factors have been responsible for this and he hoped that Trinity would further add to it’s current influences.Ms Sarah Kemp said that she was pleased to be present on such an occasion in Kolkata and further said that though Trinity College was primarily a school for western music, however in this world of globalization very soon new forms of music would be introduced like rock, pop, Bollywood and jazz to make it more complete. Mr.M.H.Das said that Kolkata was a city very rich in culture and a lot of noted luminaries had been born in this city including the great Tagore so it is only fitting that the Kolkata Chapter is celebrating it’s 125th year. He also spoke about A.R.Rahman being an ex student of the Chennai Chapter.

The teachers of the Kolkata Chapter were awarded certificates for helping create a new generation of talented musicians who would all shine in their own fields.

Finally the audience was treated to some enchanting recitals by 18 students which proved to be more than impressive and left us all asking for more.

Here’s wishing the Kolkata Chapter of Trinity College of Music and the Trinity College of London as well all the best for the future!

Whistling Woods International kicks off its Multicity Tour on Documentaries

Whistling Woods International India Tour

Mumbai, Aug 5, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) A documentary, as a film-making genre, is often misunderstood to be boring and revolving only around serious topics. Whistling Woods International – Institute for Film, Television, Animation and Media Arts, has thus taken up upon itself to dispel these misconceptions and has begun their tour called ‘I & eye – a series of multicity seminars on Documentary Practices and Perceptions.

Sixth Annual Festivals of Speed: Lamborghini Aventador, Bugatti Veyron & Mosler Raptor

Fastest Cars on Display at Festivals of Speed

Fastest Cars on Display at Festivals of Speed

Festivals of SpeedOrlando, FL, August 4, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio / PressReleasePoint) Now in the sixth year at the Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande-Lakes, the Festivals of Speed, Presented by Lexus of Orlando, is set for October 7-9. This heralded luxury automotive event, for benefit of the Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children, will once again bring together world’s most exotic automobiles, aircraft, motorcycles and watercraft. This year, Festivals of Speed has continued to expand by adding an additional day of automotive appreciation to the annual, Luxury Lifestyle Jet Port Reception, Wine Connoisseurs’ Dinner, and Motorsports Collection Display as well as a VIP Pavilion that is now located directly on show field, to cater to the true speed aficionado.

Bihaan Music Launches RIMJHIM feat. ANWESHA & DEBANJALEE Composed by ANINDA BOSE - International Bengali Modern Songs Album

By Aditya Chakraborty

Anwesha, Usha Uthup, Tarun Bhattacharya, Abhijit Banerjee and others launching RIMJHIM International Bengali Songs Album
Anwesha, Usha Uthup, Tarun Bhattacharya, Abhijit Banerjee and others launching RIMJHIM International Bengali Album

Calcutta, August 2, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Bihaan Music launched the Bengali audio CD ‘Rimjhim’, an album featuring Anwesha and Debanjalee which is the first Bengali commercial album featuring modern songs recorded, mixed and mastered in New Jersey, USA recently.

The album has 7 songs featuring Anwesha (interview) and Debanjalee (interview) who has penned and composed two songs as well.

The album has been produced by Aninda Bose (interview) who is also the primary composer of the album. The album has an international feel as Aninda's mentor Dan Skye, renowned guitarist and sound engineer  who has worked with Shotgun Symphony and Bon Jovi, is very much a part of this project as the sound engineer.

The music launch took place in the presence of well known composer Abhijit Bandopadhyay, Kolkata's favorite didi - singer Usha Uthup (interview), renowned santoor player Tarun Bhattacharya and others at International Club, Kolkata on 29th July, 2011.

Listen to free song previews and download the album in MP3 format from Washington Bangla Radio.

Soho Mojo Presents Rila Banerjee & Friends, Los Amigos

Soho Mojo - Rila & Friends + Los Amigos

Calcutta, July 27, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Soho mojo presents on Wednesday 27 July 2011 at 8:00 pm: Rila Banerjee & friends with Nondon Bagchi on drums, Sumith Ramachandran on guitars, Mainak “Bumpy” Nag Chowdhury on bass, Dominick Saldhana on keys and Rila Banerjee on vocals, also featuring Ben Westley on vocals.

The above will be followed by India’s premier latin jazz outfit Los Amigos.

Run with Hollywood Stars in Half Marathon!

Hollywood Half Marathon

Los Angeles, CA, July 25, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio / PRWEB) Everybody dreams of having their place on the Hollywood Walk of Fame among the movie stars, but a true champion would rather run than walk. Register for the first-ever Hollywood Half Marathon in Los Angeles to feel like a star for a day.

Surbahar's Magical Evening at Batuk Nandy Smriti Samman Awards 2011 - A Report

Usha Uthup & Nilanjan Nandy
Tollywood Kolkata Bengali Movie Actor Rajatava Dutta & Nilanjan Nandy

Calcutta, July 22, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) "Surbahar" was founded by the guitar Legend - BATUK NANDY in the year 1964.  Surbahar till date happens to be one of the premiere organizations in teaching Music in it's true form.

Batuk Nandy Smriti Samman Awards 2011 by Surbahar

Batuk Nandy Smriti Samman Awards 2011 by Surbahar

After Batuk Nandy's demise in 2001, his son - the leading Music Composer and Vocalist Nilanjann Nandy (aka Aroop Ratan) took over the mantle of the Principal and trains many students under his tutelage in Vocal Music (Rabindra-Sangeet, Light Classical, Ghazal, Adhunik, Shyama Sangeet, Puratoni) and the Guitar.

Batuk Nandy Smriti Samman Awards 2011 by Surbahar

Batuk Nandy Smriti Samman Awards 2011 by Surbahar

In the past, performers like Debabrata Biswas, Chinmoy Chattopadhyay, Asoketaru Bandopadhyay, Sagar Sen, Suchitra Mitra, Sumitra Sen, Kanika Bandopadhyay, Arghya Sen, Purba Dam, Shyamal Mitra, Manabendra Mukhopadhyay, Hemanta Mukhopadhyay, Pintu Bhattacharyya, Tanmoy Chattopadhyay, Swapan Gupta etc. cretaed magic on stage in musical evenings organised by Batuk Nandy's SURBAHAR.