Summer Rain:  Indian classical music and Western classical new music

Wednesday November 12 at the James Mann Center for the Performing Arts at the New York Mills Schools.  7:30 pm.  Advance ticket reservations $12 or $15 at the door.  $2 additional discount with a donation for the Mills Food Shelf.

Zeitgeist & Nirmala

SUMMER RAIN is a new production with music developed and performed by Zeitgeist and composer/veena virtuoso Nirmala Rajasekar. A blend of Indian Classical music (Carnatic tradition) and Western classical new music, SUMMER RAIN features five musical compositions interspersed with discussion and interactive opportunities designed to bring audiences a greater understanding of the two traditions.

This tour of Summer Rain is made possible in part by a grant provided by the Minnesota State Arts Board, through an appropriation by the Minnesota State Legislature from the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund with money from the vote of the people of Minnesota on November 4, 2008.

For millennia, the sharing of music has been a natural, joy-filled means for peoples of different cultures to grow in their understanding of one another and increase the artistic possibilities of each practice. For musicians, the pull to increase our palette by exploring new timbres, melodic structures, and rhythms is absolutely irresistible, and the rich results of cross-cultural musical sharing can be traced throughout our human history. Zeitgeist and Nirmala Rajasekar felt that irrestistable pull several years ago, during a five-day workshop devoted to the development of new work. The result was Thillana Shuffle, a work that features Western and Indian drumming and improvisation by each of our ensemble members. As our collaboration has continued, more works have ensued, including Summer Rain, written by Rajasekar, and Morning Dew, written by her daughter, Shruthi. Sublime Journey was composed by Rajasekar for a world-wide tour featuring both Carnatic and Hindustani musicians. Taken with the work, Zeitgeist member Pat O’Keefe made an arrangement for Rajasekar and Zeitgeist, adding Western influences to the Carnatic and Hindustani mix. Knowing that music has a profound place in our spiritual worlds, we created an arrangement of Raghupati Raghav Raja Ram, a traditional Indian devotional song much favored by Ghandi. Together, this collection of works makes up our musical evening, Summer Rain. Summer Rain celebrates our differences, delves deeply into our common ground, and creates a new musical experience for our audiences and musicians. Welcome and enjoy.