French trio charm Goan audience
The Times of India News
PANAJI: Away from the bustle of the city, the International
Centre Goa at Dona Paula, offers a peaceful atmosphere and a
picturesque surrounding. Great for a party, but not for a musical
concert, if acoustics is what one is referring to. Performing here
were the `Nataraj XT', a trio of French performers.
What these three tried to do, was to infuse a dose of Indian
classical music, with traces of the raga, and electronics. This was
a new concept they had tried in their native France and successfully
reached those sections which wanted something different.
The instruments they played explained better. There was Pierre
Moitram, playing the sitar, Richard Bernet, the sarod and Kapi,
juggling with computerised electronics.
While the three improvised, striking a combination of Indian
traditional modalities and electronic textures, it was Moitram, who
has studied with Prof. Pramod Kumar, a disciple of Ravi Shankar,
that created the Indian classical style, with Bernet supplementing
him on the sarod. Bernet is quite a veteran on the instrument,
having attended the Ali Akbar Khan Music College in California,
learnt with the group `Origine' and having played with the Lal
But it was Kapi who was the most dominant with his synthesised
electronic machine, taking into his stride a variety of tempos like
the rock, pop, jazz, blues, ragga, reggae, etc., with a key ally on
the sides in the form of the sound engineer Patrick Jauneaud.
Bernet, during a chat, wished to steer clear of any mention of
playing raga music. ``This is not raga at all,'' he said, and went
on to emphasise that they were no where near the real thing of this
classical music interpretation. However, among the pieces they
played were the `Bhairav', `Yaman', `Jan puri', all light music
meant for dancing, he said.
The group was brought to Goa, courtesy the Alliance Francaise de
Goa, in collaboration with International Centre Goa, Embassy of
France in India and the Indian Airlines, after touring some
important cities in the country.