Notes of solace


The tenth edition of Sur Jahan will begin on February 5

Banglanatak dot com in association with The International Centre Goa is all set to return with its annual edition of Sur Jahan, the World Peace Music Festival 2020 from February 5 to 7 at The International Centre Goa, Dona Paula.

The festival is a harbinger of music, harmony, and togetherness and the tenth edition will once again witness euphonious tunes together with scintillating performances.

Among the performers is Dalinda, a band from Hungary which has three women, as lead singers. Their music represents a celebration of womanhood and feminine energy based on the traditional tunes of Hungarian folk music. Although essentially an a’capella band, Dalinda is now venturing into involving instruments too. For this festival, they will be accompanied by instrumental performers Balint Konczei, Daniel Szabo and Attila Gyorgy Kaszap.

Radiant Arcadia meanwhile is an all women band from Denmark formed in 2013, by Annette Bellaoui. The musicians are from Muslim, Jewish and Christian background. Likewise they come from an array of traditions, from Nordic and Celtic folk music, to jazz, rock, Klezmer and Middle Eastern ballads.

Also performing at the festival is Swedish musician/composer Ale Moller who is often considered as ‘The Godfather of Nordic World Music’. This version of his band will have Möller himself on instruments like mandola, flutes, cows horn, clarino and harmonica, along with two singers -Mamadou Sene from West Africa, and Greek singer/dancer Maria Stellas. Joining them will be fiddler Anna Moller (Ale Moller’s daughter), pianist/composer Johan Graden, and percussionist Olle Linder.

Coreyah a multiple award-winning Korean and world music ensemble will also be at the festival. The performance will feature traditional Korean instruments such as Daegeum, Sogeum, Tungso, Geomungo and traditional Korean drums.

Danyel Waro will be showcasing the acoustic Maloya, the blues of La Réunion islands in the Indian Ocean. His music is a reminder of the cultural heritage of his place and also of the hope and courage in the face of the challenges posed by the independence movements of La Réunion islands that had erupted in the 1970s, followed by the Renaissance of the 1980s. He is also known to craft his own musical instruments – the Kayanm – a flat instrument manufactured from stems of cane flowers and filled with wild saffron seeds; the Bobre, made of a cord suspended on a bow with a calabash as resonance chamber and the Rouler – a large drum made from a rum barrel over which is stretched a cow-skin.

From India, there will be a performance from Manganiyars, the traditional folk musicians of Western Rajasthan who sing Rajasthani folk song, Marwar Lok geet and Sufiyana Kalam. The folk songs mainly revolve around the lives of the Rajas and Maharajas, daily lifestyle, gods and goddesses and several immortal love stories. The other Indian performance will be by the Bauls of Bengal. Baul music is the soul of Bengal and is essentially the music of self-searching. It is about 500 years old. Living the life of an esoteric, denouncing the material world, Bauls urge people to rise above the narrow divides created by caste, creed and religion to find love, peace and harmony. Baul music got inscribed in UNESCO Representative List of Heritage of Humanity in 2008.

Debalina Bhowmick from Kolkata will lead the team and will be accompanied by Mallika Akar, Chhote Golam and Nemai Khyapa of Murshidabad. They will be joined by Elvis Lobo on guitar and Carlos Gonsalves on percussions (from Goa) and Arpan Thakur Chakraborty on dotara, Khokan Das on dhol, Mohan Tati on flute (from West Bengal).

Besides performances which will be held from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., the festival will have workshops from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in addition to showcasing of rural handicrafts in the evening. The festival will also travel to Jaipur, Rajasthan this year from February 8 to 10.