The amazing voice of Pta (Panditain) Gargee Siddhanta Dutta enthralled the audience at the Burnaby Hall on the 24th of June 2018 , during the performance organised by Pandit Jasraj School of Music Foundation (PJSOMF). Dressed in a beautiful silk saree, Pta Gargee was a picture of calm, serene and sophistication on the stage. She started off with Raag Yaman in Vilambit Ektaal with a short and sweet alaap and proceeded to elaborate the raag in a very intricate way. Later she presented a Hanuman Bhajan in Raag Jog which was greatly appreciated by one and all. Many times, classical musicians are so involved in technique that the emotional aspect of the raag is lost but Pta Gargee, with her skillful technique, was par excellence when it came to the expression of the devotional aspect of the composition. Her presentation was soul stirring and she was completely involved with the spirit of the song. Her second devotional song Shree Krishna Chandra Ne was heavenly and filled with a lot of “Bhav” (emotion) and was a wonderful tribute to her Guruji Pandit Jasraj ji. Mrs. Nina Budhhadev of Vois Crèatives, The Bandish Network, India Currents Magazine, and a well-known music and art personality in Vancouver had this to say about the concert “I was touched by the Hanuman Ji Ki Rachna in Raag Jog, one of my most adored raags. In the second half the bhajan, ‘Shri Krishna Chandra Ne’ reached me. As always, the PJSOMF evening was warm, welcoming and hospitable.” The compositions that followed were brilliant and rendered beautifully by Pta Gargee.
Ms. Anjali Joshi, a multitalented musician from Seattle who plays a number of musical instruments like the harmonium, santoor, violin and numerous others, provided exemplary melodious support to Pta Gargee while our own Vancouver based tabla exponent Mr. Amarjeet Singh accompanied and provided outstanding support throughout the entire concert. Amarjeet imparts knowledge of this percussion instrument to students of classical Indian music through The Naad Foundation. I have watched and heard Amarjeet Singh a number of times in Vancouver, but this was among his best performances. Pta Gargee’s young daughter was very comfortable providing vocal support to her mother. Mr. Krishna Teja of Pandit Jasraj School of Music, with his deep voice, was an excellent addition as a vocal support to Pta Gargee. The artists were introduced by Mr. Rohan Khadilkar and the entire evening was filled with an excellent selection of rhythms and raags. The last composition in Bhairavi was a perfect finale to the entire musical evening. Pandit Jasraj school of Music Foundation has an excellent group of musicians and music lovers who work relentlessly to promote Indian classical music in Vancouver.
Photos provided by Shishir Gopinath