SPIC MACAY : An inward transformational journey; A Cultural Immersion – Convention 2017

I am very fortunate to undertake the soulful inward journeys laced with the culture pilgrimage of SPIC MACAY every year, all through. For every ambassador of Indian and world culture it has been a very enriching one as always. Here I captured the essence of the pilgrimage 2017, SPIC MACAY international convention 2017 held at IIT Delhi recently. You can check the visual captures, in still form, at my FLICKR stream

The Prime Minister of India, Sri Narendra Modi, inaugurating the International convention 2017, in his inimitable style of eloquence, pays tribute to the movement of SPIC MACAY and also to the founder of the movement, Dr. Kiran Seth. Beseeches the youth to embrace the spirit and purpose of the movement.

The following short video documentary, in five parts, captures the essence of the conventions, the daily schedule followed, the spirit of volunteerism, the passionate facilitation by gurus who have dedicated their lives for the cause of artforms, the earnest desire of every participant to assimilate, imbibe and live the spirit as well as the art forms, as much as they can.

The week long convention is an endeavour to instill the discipline and have a sublime control of ones own life and expose every participant to the mysticism of arts and culture.

The days start at 4am with YOGA, then shramdan to keep our environment clean and tidy, then after a break of an hour for morning ablutions, commences with the intensives. Every participant will undergo an intensive to gain deeper understanding of an art form works with a Guru for seven days, four hours a day. The afternoons after the lunch is devoted the exposing every participant to a variety of genre like not limited to music and dance but also theatre, choir music, folk music and dance, puppetry etc. The evenings are devoted to classical music and dance performances.
Enjoy watching!



The last day is all about sharing the learning during the week gone by, in every art form. .Here are a few of the showcasing I have been able to capture at a couple of venues. I apologize for not being able to cover all the five centres of performances.


Come participate and contribute to the propagation of art forms and the spread of the spirit of brotherhood and composite culture. UNITY in Diversity.

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Homage to Pt. Ravi Shankar by Paul Livingstone @ SREENI ON STAGE

I was lost in a different world with rain god, the cold breeze and the roaring Ganges adding to essence of the evening. I felt delighted to have been part of the concert.

Kindly click on Homage to Pt. Ravi Shankar by his disciple Paul Livingstone, to visit my blog on performing arts (SREENI ON STAGE) for the complete article.

The veggie musicians from CHINA

It is amazing what can result from clubbing of ‘the nature intelligence with musical intelligence’. Watch out these two brothers producing wonders!

Dance and Music are beckoning…..Jumpinnnnnnnnng!

The ringside, yet very close association with the production and performance of contemporary dance performance, DEVOTIONs, last week has had a profound impact on me. I wanted to fly like every other dancer on the stage. I restrained myself. It was like I was on the stage. I shot the entire performance thrice, twice during the rehearsals and the final performance. I was almost with my camera along with the dancers during the rehearsals, as I wanted to capture every move. I was flowing with the movement of the dancers, watching every move through the eye-piece. It was an amazing feeling. It was a sense of dejavu.

I went back to the last decade of mine, when I was associated with a few intense creative endeavours –

a. Dance – As part of STEM dance Kampani and Madhu Natraj when I was at IIMB. I was a regular participant and even roped STEM to perform at IIMB.
b. Music – I designed sets and also directed quite a few episodes of ‘Sur Sandhya’, a classical music program on Star Plus, produced by Gurumayi Anuradha Chaurasia
c. Theatre – Associated with Guru Barry John’s Imago theatre, first as a student and then as an adviser too..

Devotions brought back those emotions of being involved in the thick of the action and performing there on the stage. There is no pleasure beyond performing on the stage.

I have been living a vicarious life of ‘on the stage’, thanks to the motivational sessions that I do addressing the youth – almost 200 days a year. So that has been quenching my thirst of performing and motivating. The active association with SPICMACAY in the last five years has also quenched my thirst to a great extent of enjoying the art forms. My camera has taken me to the stage, behind the stage and into the lives of inspiring performers. But, it seems the time has come for me to jump very actively on the ‘real’ creative stage.

I have taken a few steps in Music – started learning again with Guru Vaidyanathan and the action in Dance and Theatre seem to be round the corner. I shall and will make it happen this year.

DEVOTIONS….

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'Devotions' - Amalgamation and confluence of dance forms'Devotions' - Amalgamation and confluence of dance forms'Devotions' - Amalgamation and confluence of dance forms'Devotions' - Amalgamation and confluence of dance forms'Devotions' - Amalgamation and confluence of dance forms'Devotions' - Amalgamation and confluence of dance forms
'Devotions' - Amalgamation and confluence of dance forms'Devotions' - Amalgamation and confluence of dance forms'Devotions' - Amalgamation and confluence of dance forms'Devotions' - Amalgamation and confluence of dance forms'Devotions' - Amalgamation and confluence of dance forms'Devotions' - Amalgamation and confluence of dance forms
'Devotions' - Amalgamation and confluence of dance forms'Devotions' - Amalgamation and confluence of dance forms'Devotions' - Amalgamation and confluence of dance forms'Devotions' - Amalgamation and confluence of dance forms'Devotions' - Amalgamation and confluence of dance forms'Devotions' - Amalgamation and confluence of dance forms

DEVOTIONs – A contemporary dance piece by five dancers exploring & sharing their own path, story aspirations, experiences in devotion.

March 31, 2012 Stainless Art Gallery, Mira Complex, Beneath Okhla Flyover, near to New Friends Colony Signal, New Delhi

Directed by: GIlles Chuyen

with Nikolina Nikoleski, Raj kumar Mahoor, Astha Dixit, Nihar Ranjan Goswami & Gilles Chuyen.

Space Design by Manish Kansara.

Photography by R. Sreenivasan

Flash Mob Phenomenon – Interestingly engaging and enlivening surprising places

I always enjoyed dancing and usually jig into an impromptu one with our daughter, Mallika, to her embarrassment some times in a busy square, auditorium or school. Music and dance can create an amazing environment that can enliven any soul. Interesting to see the chemistry within human beings change in a few seconds!

As I was doing a little bit of youtubing to figure out where and how FLASH MOB phenomenon originated, I stumbled across quite a few interesting applications. This has been a few year old phenomenon. Many times, Indian music scores were the instigators or perpetrators! I just thought of sharing.

Of course, the 26/11 soothing the city event at the Mumbai CST was covered very widely in India –

World-wide the applications of this has been immense.

Very interesting to see, introduction to anthropology classes by the professor starts with a planned choreography taking 500 students by surprise, in a University of Australia.  I thought, my kind of facilitator here. I dare more faculty to do so.

Excited to watch an interlude by students in a social studies class in the US. Thanks to the spirit of the faculty, it went of so well. Can we all as facilitators take such a welcome interludes!

The faculty and staff of this university go a step further to surprise students and parents during a Basketball game

A great way to sensitize the diversity of students on the campus of Oregon state univ by faculty and staff –

And it goes to the extent of holding the city centre for a spectacle at a traffic signal in TORONTO – Mojja hi Mojja

Perhaps one of the earliest and very interesting one at Antwerp Railway station – Do Re mei

I am sure you will find many many more. Happy dancing!!

Gurus and Maestros

25th National Convention SPIC MACAY - IIT Kanpur OvernightDr. Sandhya Purecha and disciples @ Parampara festival - TrailokyamNagalandSPICMACAY-2008-06-19-0047NagalandSPICMACAY-2008-06-18-0040NagalandSPICMACAY-2008-06-17-015225th National Convention of SPICMACAY - Day 3
NagalandSPICMACAY-2008-06-16-0188Indian dance form - manipuriSpic Macay 25th National Convention, IIT Kanpur 2010Ananya - Justin McCarthy - 22 October 2010 (Friday)Malavika Sarukkai's Shakti ShaktimaanSPIC MACAY 25th national convention DAY 4
Navtej Johar @ IGNITE 2010Astad Deboo @ CWG - Central Park, CPShovana Narayan - Kathak - BVB mahotsavSuraj Kund MelaKathak Samaroh 2010Guru Purnima - Dance tributes
Pt. Ravi Shankar and AnoushkaAnanya - Justin McCarthy - 22 October 2010 (Friday)Ananya 2011: Day 2 - Vyjayanthi Kashi and Shambhavi Dance EnsembleFacesSpic Macay 25th National Convention,  IIT Kanpur 2010Aditi Mangaldas and troupe - Kathak @ Trailokyam, Natya Tarangini 2011

Maestros and Gurus, a set on Flickr.

This is a small tribute to Gurus and Maestros.

I have tried to get all the gurus and maestros that I have listened to, watched performing and interacted with thus far. There are many more young outstanding performers whom I have watched and interacted with, but have not included along with these visionaries. I am sure I will in due course of time.

My Journey @ IWSB with young music-preneur Sumit Kumar Singh

Sumit with his didgeridoo at IWSB

Sumit with his didgeridoo at IWSB

Sumit, an alumnus of IITD and IIML, is a multi-faceted personality. He is very passionate about preservation, revival and promotion of Indian musical instruments and Indian art forms that are on the verge of becoming extinct. He enjoys playing more than a dozen instruments. Apart from music, he loves photography. He works in the strategy group of BOC.

He has spanned small businesses in the space of exclusive TEA retailing, exquisite candle making apart from revival of Musical instruments – one of the endeavors is Didgeridoo makers. He is one of the prime movers behind the popular Delhi Drum Circle that meets every fortnight at the Deer park, Hauz khas in Delhi to jam.

Sumit not only shared his journey with the young entrepreneurial leaders but also jammed with a few DDC regulars at the IWSB Drum Circle. The young members, ranging from 3 year-olds to 10 years-olds, at the school run by Society for Empowerment through Education, on the IWSB campus really enjoyed the drumming circle.

India is bestowed with such a variety of musical instruments each from a cultural milieu.

In Manali – we have seven day long festival of Diwali
– Jab we met song was pictured in manali
– I picked up Tibetan peace bell
o Rotating around will give a long resounding sound
– Science behind is amazing

North-east – yak and rhino horns used for making a few instruments and precious artifacts. We need to be careful not to promote poaching. As long as they are made out of dead ones, it is fine.

When we see a gap, why do not we do it?

Corporates are paying a lot for outbound, team building. Can we extend it to rural travel, arts and culture? Experiencing them through packaging is the key. Didgeridoo makers on facebook have about 1000 fans. About 15 of Didgeridoo are being made at any given time. These are made in the Haridwar-Rishikesh belt. Each artisan working gets about 30-40K. This revenue funds their livelihood.

could you share a little about the TEA business

There are five grades of tea
– white tea – Rs. 80 K per kg – organic is Rs. 1.5 lakh a kg
o Herbal is infused kind of tea
– Yellow tea – sun dried
– Orange peco – 5K per kg
– Black tea and green tea – almost similar : How it is processed
o Liquor formation
o Furnace
o Anti-oxidant
– CTC is the cheapest tea

We package exclusive herbal tea.

Where do all these things fit?

I am good at sales. We need to do a fair trade Tea channel. Tea is always auctioned. India from being a net vegetable of exporter has become net vegetable importer. We see that the middleman is the investor.

I need to understand the psyche of the vendor in chawri-bazaar. Get the deepest insights. You are dependent on his knowledge.

Relationship building and customer delight

Wax cannot withstand the July temp. We had to change everything – blends. Once, on order, I sold 6 candles at 6000 each. I had to be redo and send again, since the receiver received broken candle

If you build the relationships and be trustworthy, he is more than happy to help. Local level officers and linkers you connect and make them happy facilitators…

Drum Circle at IWSBDrum Circle at IWSBDrum Circle at IWSBDrum Circle at IWSBDrum Circle at IWSB
Drum Circle at IWSBDrum Circle at IWSBDrum Circle at IWSBDrum Circle at IWSBDrum Circle at IWSBDrum Circle at IWSB
People of Eminence in My Journey - Sumit Kumar Singh

Let me wind up this note by giving a link to one of the videos on YOUTUBE of Sumit sharing about an instrument and performing.

sreeni@iwsb.in

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