first of its kind CD featuring the 19th compositions
of Muthusvami Dikshitar (1775-1835) in the
genre of nottusvara sahityas, recorded with
Indian voices and Celtic orchestration was
released on the 15th of
March at Lehigh University.
Composer Kanniks Kannikeswaran presented a
multi-media lecture concert
on the topic ‘Vismaya
– An Indo Celtic Musical Journey’, in
conjunction with the CD release on Saturday the 15th
of March, 2008.
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This recording marks the culmination of three years
of effort by Kannikeswaran to research and record
these compositions with western accompaniments.
Kanniks had presented a lecture/demonstration on
this topic at 81st Annual
Conference of the Music Academy, Chennai.
swarasahityas are a creation of the genius of
Muthusvami Dikshitar, one of India's foremost
composers, in whose hands European (primarily)
Celtic tunes that came to India with the British
East India company, transformed into catchy songs in
sanskrit, easily accessible to children.
In a profound sense, this
genre of music represents the innate ability
of Indian culture to be open to ideas from
the other parts of the world while
integrating them within its ocean of
knowledge. This genre of music, was
perhaphs 19th century India's
expression of its premonition of a
globalized world of the 21st century where
several cultures would co-exist together and
share a common future.
The CD has
been recorded and produced in Cincinnati, OH and is
accompanied by a 20 page booklet presenting
the background and lyrics of the
A range of ethnic instruments such as
a penny whistle, an Irish flute, a Celtic
harp, a fiddle, a hammered dulcimer, the
have accompanied the rendition of
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concert was hosted by India Cllub,
Lehigh University and was presented at the
Packard Lab auditorium.
Dr. Alok Baveja, who spoke at
the conclusion of the event said, "It was
not only informative and enjoyable, but also
inspirational in that it helped me see how
visionary figures go beyond man-made
- An Indo Celtic Musical Journey' is
. If you have problems
ordering the CD, please contact us via