Enjoy heavenly sitar sounds on the Ridge | TheUnion.com

Enjoy heavenly sitar sounds on the Ridge

“Father and son had an amazing connection with each other. They created an incredible cascade of sound that sent ecstatic tremors through the space and transformed the audience. It was as if they and their instruments became one. The audience gave them a standing ovation.” – Radha House, Spokane 2003

The Union staff

Two of India’s most prestigious sitar players and vocalists will perform “Music of the Gods” on the San Juan Ridge Sunday.

This acclaimed father-son sitar duo, “The Mishras,” have been touring the world for 20 years playing folk music and classical North Indian ragas, one of the oldest improvisatory and devotional music forms in the world. (“raga” means “rainbow of colors.”) The ensemble for this 2007 tour also includes renowned tabla player Marco Zonka of Seattle and Felicity Gerwing of the Kootenays, Canada, on tamboura and swarmandala.

An ancient instrument, the sitar is a plucked, stringed instrument that uses sympathetic strings along with a gourd-resonating chamber to produce a very lush sound. In the hands of a master with spiritual intent, it evokes a meditative or contemplative mood. The instrument first became popular in the West, says Wikipedia, when The Beatles used it; indeed, Beatles lead guitarist George Harrison was inspired, and later taught, by sitar player Ravi Shankar.

Says Pandit Shivanth, “(The purpose of Indian music) is to connect with God, have a fresh mind and feel good.” Toward that end, the Mishars delight audiences with their mischievousness and obvious joy in what they do. It’s catching.

Son Deobrat Mishra, who recently received his masters in sitar, was honored with India’s best sitar player award in 1995, and in the year 2000 he received the SurMani (Jewels of Sound) award in Mumbay, India.

The group’s latest album is “Solterre: Songs of Solstice.” Go online at http://www.kindmusic.ca to check it out.

This event is hosted by the Ananda Institute, http://www.ananda university.org.




As long as you are driving some distance to get to this concert, why not attend the sumptuous Indian banquet that precedes it. Enjoy delicious vegetarian food, prepared with care, and friendly folks to share it with. Cost is $10; time is 6 p.m. Make your reservation the same way you make your concert ticket purchase, described in the Know & Go.

Back in India

To keep the traditional music of India growing and alive, the Mishras began teaching music in their Benares home and now have built the Academy of Classical Indian Music, where students from all over the world come to study music, dance, yoga, devotional singing, voice, drum and meditation. Visit http://www.kindmusic.ca for more information about the Mishras.


WHAT: Mishra Sitar Concert

WHEN: Sunday, June 24, 7:30 p.m.

WHERE: Ananda Meditation Retreat, 40 minutes from Nevada City, at Ananda Institute Campus, (this is not Ananda Village but 5 miles north of the village, down Jackass Flats and up Cypress Mine Road). For directions, go online at http://www.meditationretreat.org under “Directions.”

ADMISSION: Concert tickets for $15 may be purchased in advance online at http://www.anandauniversity.org, by e-mailing reservations@meditationretreat.org or by calling (530) 292-3024 with credit card details (visa or mastercard only) and your phone number; or $20 at the door.

INFORMATION: Call (530) 292-3024 and talk with either Nischala Cryer or Pranavati Sexton

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