PANAJI : The three-day Ketevan Sacred Music Festival will – for the first time since its inception in 2016 – host an online edition so as to respect the safety norms of the ongoing pandemic, from April 6 to 8.

Shot at different heritage monuments in 7 countries – India, USA, UK, Portugal, Japan, Georgia, Argentina; and more than 10 cities, including Old Goa, Boston, London, Los Angeles, Lisbon, Rome, Liverpool, Varanasi, Tokyo, and Tbilisi; there are over 100 participants and 16 collaborations while the productions were specially recorded and produced by the Ketevan Festival, says a press note.

The Goa University Choir, being the host and resident artist choir of the festival,  have recorded three pieces – The Big Ocean Cantata, which is a piece that was composed by Santiago Lusardi Girelli and dedicated to the Dalai Lama on his visit to Goa in December 2019, the Vox Clamantis Oratory (world premiere), written to the memory of the world admired French monk Charles de Foucald, and a program on St Francis of Assisi´s Prayer of Peace, in collaboration with the awarded Dhrupad singer Pandit Ritwik Sanyal.

The festival kick-starts with The Big Ocean Cantata featuring the Goa University Choir, Kushmita Biswakarma and Santiago Lusardi Girelli.

Ketevan’s aim has always been to celebrate inter-religious coexistence by putting together soulful sacred music programmes from various spiritual traditions across the globe. Accordingly, this version will offer concerts, talks and interviews.

A short documentary of the ‘Drepung Monastery Monks’, interview and performance gives an insight into the life of a monk and more.

The ‘Nightingale Vocal Ensemble’ have specially written music for the festival and recorded at Harvard University, Boston, US titled ‘The Divine in Nature’, which will be premiered at the festival. Next, with over 20 years of experience as an Indian Cello player and as a disciple of HariPrasad Chaurasia, is the performance by Saskia Rao. This show will offer the confluences of a western cello with some characteristics of the sitar. Lastly, the  ‘Sakhioba Ensemble’ will perform their traditional Georgian Sacred Chant.

“In these times of social distancing, an uncertain future, and ongoing crisis, it is essential to rediscover the value and richness of the sacred, the incorruptible, the eternal. This is where our Festival seeks to recreate that atmosphere , where the sacredness of sound leads us to discover and distinguish the perishable of the eternal, and enable us to find that eternity habitats in our own voice,” co-founder and artistic director of the festival, Dr. Santiago Lusardi Girelli is quoted as saying in the press communique.

These performances and the online versions  of all other videos, interviews, and performances will be available to watch for free on the festival’s website, and on YouTube Ketevan Sacred Music Channel.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here