Tag Archives: Shankar

Learning to Belong: Desi Poetry Reading

To join the poetry reading on Monday August 24th 2020 at 6 pm PST and 9 pm EST, click on this LINK

The South Asian diaspora is perpetually evolving, breaking new boundaries and forging new connections in every sphere. India Currents presents its second Desi Poetry Reading to discuss how South Asian immigrant communities have changed over the years, as well as attitudes surrounding diversity, multiculturalism and belonging.

This is effort is in collaboration with Matwaala, a South-Asian poetry collaborative designed to provide immigrant and POC writers with a literary platform. In their own words, Matwaala represents “voices that dare to say the unsaid and hear the unheard…voices that break down barriers…voices that dare to be South Asian, American, and simply human.” Since their formation, they have hosted a number of poetry festivals and writing workshops. Most notably, they recently spearheaded Smithsonian’s Beyond Bollywood Project, where they created a Poetry Wall in honor of South Asian writers at the Irving Museum and Archives.

This poetry reading will feature notable writers from various pockets of the South Asian community, including Geetha Sukumaran, Ravi Shankar, Ralph Nazareth, Kirun Kapoor, and youth poet Kanchan Naik. India Currents staff Srishti Prabha and Kanchan Naik will moderate the event, facilitating questions from the audience via email.

Use this BigStage link to login: https://zoom.bigstage.online/index.php?event_id=DesiPoetry&client_id=C000004

To find out more about this event and its panelists, stay tuned for updates on our Facebook and Instagram!


Kanchan Naik is a rising senior at the Quarry Lane School in Dublin, California. Aside from being the Youth Editor at India Currents, she is also the editor-in-chief of her school newspaper The Roar, Teen Poet Laureate of Pleasanton, a Global Student Square editor for Newsroom By the Bay and Director of Media Outreach at nonprofit Break the Outbreak

Celebrating 100 Years of Ravi Shankar

“Life is much larger than birth & death, failure & success. You are the unblemished, pure, eternal self. Knowing this, you will walk like a King.”

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

Fifty-eight years ago, renowned Indian composer Pt. Ravi Shankar founded the Kinnara School of Music, spreading this noble philosophy and a fiery passion for the sitar with the rest of the world. A music creator for All India Radio, it was Pt. Ravi Shankar who popularized classical Indian music among the likes of Yehudi Menuhin and the Beatles. His distinct performing style set him apart from the other classical performers of his time, as his intricate rhythmic patterns were considered both melodic and unconventional. He brought an incredible dedication to his work, even composing the entire soundtrack for the 1995 film, “Pather Panchali” in one day. Although he sadly passed away at 92 years in 2012, Pt. Ravi Shankar left behind an enduring, heartfelt legacy.

To commemorate that legacy, music duo Sangam has teamed up with the Arohi ensemble to release an Indo-American interpretation of Pt. Ravi Shankar’s work. Featuring Paul Livingstone as the sitarist, this cross-cultural blend includes cello duets, sarod harmonies, and percussion riffs. Even more heartwarming is the effort from so many of Ravi’s direct disciples, such as Partho Sarothy, Pedro Eustache, and Barry Phillips.

Pt. Ravi Shankar is not celebrated today for simply mastering his craft. Although he was a skilled sitarist, he also symbolized the union of two worlds, two schools of musical thought. And the global harmony he created is certainly present today, as evidenced by the interpretations of Pather Panchali from the United States, India, and México. The Arohi/Sangam collaboration serves as a sincere reminder that music lives far beyond life itself.

To view Arohi’s tribute to the “Godfather of World Music”, click here! Meanwhile, click here to download the Arohi ensemble’s ‘Tilak Shyam’ recording!

Kanchan Naik is a junior at The Quarry Lane School in Dublin, CA. Aside from being a Student Intern for India Currents, she is the editor-in-chief of her school’s news-zine The Roar. She is also the Teen Poet Laureate of Pleasanton and uses her role to spread a love of poetry in her community.

Shankar, Ehsaan, Loy & Farhan Akhtar Live!

Join Sankara Eye Foundation (SEF) and spend an evening with the world-class trio Shankar, Ehsaan and Loy, along with the multi-talented Farhan Akhtar. Mark your calendars for this mesmerizing musical concert on August 24 in San Jose, CA and August 25 in Pasadena, CA. 

Shankar Mahadevan is a singer and music composer and made an impressive start with his first album Breathless. He has won the National award multiple times for best playback singer and best music director. Ehsaan Noorani is a music composer,  guitarist and has lent his vocals to many Bollywood songs such as “Ek Junoon” from Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara and “Don The Theme” from Don. Loy Mendonsa played the guitar and piano for A.R Rehman before he became a music composer. Farhan Akhtar, the son of noted screenwriter and lyricist Javed Akhtar, is an Indian film director, screenwriter, producer, actor, playback singer and television host. After beginning his career in Bollywood as an assistant director for Lamhe (1991), Farhan made his directorial debut with Dil Chahta Hai (2001), which won a National award. Farhan Akhtar made his Hollywood debut through the soundtrack of Bride and Prejudice (2004), for which he wrote the lyrics. His official acting debut was with Rock On!! (2008), for which he won a second National Award for Best Feature Film in Hindi as producer. He wrote the dialogues, produced and acted for the critical and commercial success Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara (2011), which won him two Filmfare Awards, including Best Supporting Actor. His portrayal of Milkha Singh in the 2013 film Bhaag Milkha Bhaag earned him the Filmfare Award for Best Actor.

The trio of Shankar/Ehsaan/Loy has created magic together and won many national awards for best Music Direction with such hits as Kal Ho Na Ho, Dil Chahta Hai, Bunty aur Babli, Rock On, Dil Dhadakane Do, Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara, Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, and so on. They also won awards for Two States (Best Music) and Mission Kashmir (Best Background Music).

When Shankar, Ehsaan and Loy did a 5 city tour for SEF two years ago, they rocked the jam-packed auditoriums and the audience left wanting for more! Here is a chance to experience this for yourself, along with the talented Farhan Akhtar.

You can help prevent needless blindness by enjoying this fun-filled musical event with family and friends- does it get any better than that? Buy your tickets online at www.giftofvision.org today and treat yourself to an amazing experience, while brightening someone’s world.

Driven by the truly inspirational vision of eradicating curable blindness, Sankara Eye Foundation (SEF)  currently has 9 hospitals and is working on three new hospitals- in Hyderabad, Indore and Mumbai. SEF provides free eye care for those unable to afford it, the rural poor, accounting for 80 percent (approx. 150,000 people per year) of surgeries performed at SECI hospitals. The tireless efforts by the SEF team since inception has enabled over 1.75 million people to receive the gift of vision, absolutely free of cost. www.giftofvision.org