Indian musical trio set to impress crowds at ICC

|     Hakim Hayat     |

A TRIO of Indian classical musicians are set to dazzle crowds in Brunei Darussalam at the International Convention Centre (ICC) in Berakas tomorrow.

The trio, led by Pandit Vikash Maharaj, an award winning and internationally acclaimed sarod (classical music instrument originating from Afghanistan) player and composer, will showcase their unique blend and new take of Indian classical music that has been passed on from generations.

Pandit Vikash Maharaj, together with his sons Prabhash Maharaj, Tabla Player and Abhishek Maharaj, Sitar Player, form a group called the Maharaj Trio hailing from Varanasi in the Northern part of India and were invited by the High Commission of India in Brunei Darusslam to perform for the first time in Brunei.

Speaking to the Bulletin in an interview yesterday, Pandit Vikash Maharaj explained that their range of Ragas, which is the melodic mode in Indian classical music is the heart of all of their music which has been passed down from generation to generation in this family of musicians that can be traced back to fifteen generations.

His son Prabhash said that every performance is unique, as the dynamic relationships between musicians and audience create an entirely new and unforgettable experience every time. The band has performed at major world music festivals in Europe, Asia, the United States, the Middle East, Canada, and South America.

Sharing more about his father’s inspirational journey in promoting Indian classical music inherited by his family, Prabhash said his father has devoted his life promoting plural voices through the instrument and is also actively working on protecting human rights and human dignity as one of the founders of the People’s Vigilance Committee on Human Rights.

From left: Prabhash Maharaj, Pandit Vikash Maharaj and Abhishek Maharaj. - HAKIM HAYAT
From left: Prabhash Maharaj, Pandit Vikash Maharaj and Abhishek Maharaj. – HAKIM HAYAT

His composition and improvisation is filled with joyful and complex interactions between melody and rhythm. What makes Pandit Vikash Maharaj’s performances unique is his ability to innovate with ragas and talas with the sarod using natural abilities and also their ability to suit occasions and mood such as weather and atmosphere at where they are playing. This has been attributed to his musical lineage, part of which were masters of ancient Indian classical music.

While he is passionate about the classical traditional music of North India, he also played his own compositions and has performed internationally with musicians from a variety of genres ranging from classical Indian to modern American jazz.

He had shared stage with many great Indian music legends and has also performed with many great International musicians recorded over 150 Cd’s and LP’s. Pandit ji is the first Indian Sarod player who had performed at Nobel House in Sweden and in the parliament of New Zealand on special request of Prime Minister Helen Clark. Pandit Vikash Maharaj is also awarded with parliamentary batch of Germany and honoured with Life Time Achievement Award by City Remscheid, Germany on his 185th German visit this year.

Backed with his strong passion and desire to develop and continue the legacy of his family, in 2012, Maharaj found the group Maharaj Trio with his two sons.