Posts filed under ‘Creative Field’

Diffrent kinds of music to specialize in

Indian Classical Music was referred to as shastriya sangeet until the term ‘classical’ was borrowed from the West. The literature on Indian classical music has evolved richly and dramatically. India has a classical musical tradition that is around five thousand years old. Originally, classical music was performed only in courts and temples. Today, it is performed at public concerts or on the radio for anyone to hear. It is, however, enjoyed and performed by people of the upper class. It can be purely instrumental or may feature singers who are telling ancient tales. All of Indian Classical music are of two types viz, Hindustani and Carnatic.

Hindustani music developed in the northern regions of the country, while Carnatic music is indigenous to the south. Carnatic music is considered one of the oldest systems of music in the world. Songs of both these faculties of music are composed by great artists and handed down through generations of disciples. An important element is its devotional content.

Western Classical music is a term that is applied to a body of notated European music that extends back in time to the first millennium. The Classical period reached its majestic culmination with the masterful symphonies, sonatas, and string quartets by the three great composers: Franz Joseph Haydn, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and Ludwig van Beethoven. While many composers throughout the twentieth-century experimented in new ways with traditional instruments, many of the twentieth-century’s greatest composers, such as Italian opera composer Giacomo Puccini and the Russian pianist/composer Sergei Rachmaninoff, remained true to the traditional forms of music history. In addition to new and eclectic styles of musical trends, the twentieth century boasts numerous composers whose harmonic and melodic styles an average listener can still easily appreciate and enjoy.

Contemporary music comprises forms that are built up from very well defined structures. They consist of pop music or music that today features in movies. It is heard at festivals, ceremonies, dances, and is part of daily life.

The ghazal is one style which is known for its rich poetic, and romantic content. The Hindi geet which is basically just a song, and undoubtedly the most popular, is the film song.

Indian pop is hotter than ever. With the reach of cable to millions, pop stars have become household names like Alisha Chinai, Bally Sagoo, Colonial Cousins, Daler Mehndi – Bhangra King, Lucky Ali, Shweta Shetty, to name a few. The different forms of improvization add different facets to music and thereby, provide variety. The ability to improvise varies from performer to performer. According to Malik if you want to enter the Indi-pop segment, you either need a good composing mind or else you need to take the help of a composer. “You need to record a demo and then contact a company. If you get a good deal, your musical journey begins from here,” he says.

Moreover, each of these forms of improvisation evokes different moods. Again, the ability to evoke, characterize and exploit these different moods vary from performer to performer, and forms an integral part of the exhaustive and demanding training that is required. All of the above make music a highly refined, demanding, complex and, most importantly, an exciting art form.


March 21, 2009 at 5:27 am Leave a comment

Traditional Indian dances to specialize in.

Once in a while it helps to sit back and think about things like dance; and what it actually means to be called or to call someone a dancer, and what comes to mind is the evidence of human artistic activity. We have been told that God made man in his image; the artist intuitively knows that the reverse equally applies.
Classical Dance has a primordial origin. Dance is Shiva himself. Dance is language; not of words but of mudras, postures or gestures. When I ask you, “Have you eaten?” you answer, “No”. This is the language of words,but the language of dance and music is symbolic. The performing artist conveys every thing through signs and gestures. Dance is a language not of words, but of feeling and moods. It is the language of the heart.
In India, there are two kinds of dances; the classical, and the contemporary dance styles. Both are popular for their own reasons and both types are pursued equally today.
There are five major styles of classical dance in India. Each of these styles has been developed in specific regions of India. They differ in their language of gestures, postures or mudras, but they are all founded on the principles of rasa and they all draw upon stories and poems that tell about the lives of the Hindu Gods. These include Gods like Lord Shiva (the God of Dance), Lord Krishna, and many more. Each classical dance form has been discussed briefly in the following few pages to give you an overview of the large variety that can be explored by you according to your interest.

Manipuri developed in eastern India. The posture of the Manipuri dancer is such that the dancer’s feet face forward and knees are slightly bent. The dancer moves his or her chest and waist in opposite directions, making a figure-of-eight shapes with the body. The dancer’s arms make graceful, curved movements. His/her fingers trace out delicate circles and curves in the air. The Manipuri style includes a large repertoire (range of dances). Five types, consisting of dances involving whole troupes, as well as solos and duets, deal with a story about Lord Krishna. Another body of dances, the Sankirtanas,
involve male dancers performing jumps to the sound of drums, cymbals and clapping.

Odissi is a dance form of the state of Orissa, in eastern India. Sculptures found in Odissi, dating from the second and first century B.C., show dancers in distinctive poses characteristic of the Odissi style. The style developed from musical plays and was common in temples and village entertainment. Odissi dances were first performed by men dressed as women around temples. Now, the Odissi style is a solo dance form, usually performed by a woman. It has several similar patterns and poses as Bharata Natyam. But it makes greater use of curves in body movements and postures rendering it an innate sensuality. Occasional jumps add vitality to the Odissi style.

Folk dance
This is a form of social dancing that has become part of the customs and traditions of people. There are as many folk dances as there are states in India. Various styles, apart from the five major classical dance styles, are performed in different regions of India. They include the Yakshagana of Mysore, and the Chhau of eastern India. Unlike the classical forms, these dances are not tied down by rules but are more flexible and spontaneous.
Most of them are connected with religious or seasonal festivals. In many of these dances, the performers use sticks or even swords. Examples of folk dance styles include Bhangra, a harvest dance from Punjab, and Kolattam,a circular stick dance
performed by women in Tamil Nadu and the Lavani in Maharashtra

Bharata Natyam
“Bharata Natyam is like a Banyan tree with great roots. You can bend it, turn it, do what ever you want, but its roots remain strong… I want to take dance further, to use it as a language, as an agent of change,” -Mallika Sarabhai.
Bharata Natyam is one of the most important and probably one of the oldest of the classical styles that comes from south India. Although closely linked with local traditional dance-drama, it was used mainly in Hindu religious ceremonies. The movements of this dance style are developed from a basic pose, in which the thighs are turned out ward, the knees are flexed, and the feet are brought close together and are also turned outward. The feet beat out complex rhythms. Performances may last for about two hours and follow a set list of procedures.

Kathak is the major dance style of north India. It combines local folk elements with dance forms that developed in the courts of the Mughal emperors and later, Indian princes.
The folk and temple traditions from which the Kathak style has developed consist mostly of Hindu dance-dramas.
Kathak owes much of its present form to developments made in the 1800s at the court of Nawab Wajid Ali Shah, the ruler of Lucknow. Dancers perform Kathak keeping their bodies straight. Clever and intricate foot work, including highly rhythmical walks, glides, and fast pirouettes (spinning on one foot), gives the style its vital, dazzling, skillful character. Delicate movements of the eyes, eyebrows, neck, and shoulders are also used in some dances. Kathak is frequently lyric based performance with a sense of raunchiness. Both, men and women, perform Kathak dances. Many dances express love or devotion to Krishna.

Kathakali, from the state of Kerala, is true dance-drama. Kathakali dancers act out the parts of different characters in a play. They dress up in out size costumes to give themselves a larger than- life appearance. They also wear mask-like facial make-up, in colors that have strong symbolic meanings.
Kathakali performances are often held out doors and sometimes go on all night. They are accompanied by a person who sings or recites the poetry, while the dancers convey the meaning of each line with movements and gestures, sweeping body movements, and wide, circling arm movements.
The dancers are also trained to convey exaggerated movements through facial expressions. In former times, male dancers took all the parts in a Kathakali play. But now a days women have also started performing this form of dance.

March 16, 2009 at 6:24 am 1 comment


Query received from a student:
Are there any courses that teach you photography? How does one pursue this as a career?
Vinod (Kolkata)

Reply from our FutureMap counsellor:
Dear Vinod,
Photography is an art form; a medium in which to express ideas, so the eye, the brain and the mind are the tools that make you a good photographer. To become a successful photographer you need to use your common sense and work closely with other photographers. A professional photographer can work as an advertisement photographer, industrial photographer, fashion photographer, fine arts photographer and forensic photographer or as a freelance photographer in India. A wide range of opportunities are available in India where people appoint professional photographers to cover weddings, birthdays, festivals, and many important private events. A freelance photographer can also sell photographs to various journals, magazines, news channels and newspaper houses.

There are lot of institutes who are offering photography course. You can choose diploma, certificate or photography as one of the subject in a degree course. Post Graduate Certificate Course in Photography Design is offered by National Institute of Design, A three-year diploma in motion picture photography is offered by the Film and Television Institute, Pune, while the Mass Communication Research Centre (MCRC), Jamia Millia Islamia, Delhi offers a 2-year post-graduate diploma in motion picture photography to graduates in any discipline. Most BFA or Applied Art Courses impart specialized training in photography. Indian Institute of Mass Communication, New Delhi offers basic courses in Photography.

February 10, 2009 at 5:53 am Leave a comment

Theater – Requirements and In the Balance.

Are you Theater Material?

You should be:
#Gregarious, focused on the task you’ve set for yourself, and skilled in human resource management.
#Talented, and have the necessary skill for creative writing. #“You also need to be willing to keep working,” believes award-winning playwright, R. Ramanathan.
#Disciplined – It calls for intense discipline of mind and body. You have to go over each step many times until you can execute it perfectly. This calls for patience.
#Confident and have a firm faith in yourself as this positive belief will carry you through the ups and downs of this very competitive and demanding field.

You should not be:

#”Hasty, angry, impatient, overly optimistic or quick to take offence,” warns Joy Fernandes, reputed stage actor-director-writer, also film actor and writer.
#“Arrogant, stubborn, lazy, unreliable or afraid of manual work,” says theatre personality Divya Bhatia. Actually, whether you are a director or a technical person, the willingness to do manual work should be an important part of your personality.
#In it for money It’s not a career option. A playwright does not make too much money. If you are lucky you get a royalty per show or at the end of a batch of shows. Marathi and Gujarati theatre give the playwright a royalty ranging from Rs. 50-1000 per show.

In the Balance:

The good bits:
#“The joy of creating a play in a collective effort is unparalleled,” feels director-actor Rajat Kapoor.
#”The joy of being on-stage and connecting with the audience, even for a moment, is a high that cannot be matched. What you get out of it is tremendous, but intangible. Why do people have babies? Mainly for the joy they bring, right!”

On the other hand:
#”Rejection during auditions is something you have to be able to take in your stride. You spend long periods being without work. It’s a constant struggle.”
#Divya Bhatia, workshop consultant and Joint Festival Director for the Prithvi Festival, 2003, adds, … “Your parents will throw you out. Everyone will ask ‘what do you do,’ regardless of the number of times you tell them. Also, there’s a constant struggle for money. Raising money for a production can be a challenging task!”jokes Rajat.
#”This is not a 9-5 job, so even the best in the field keep at it. You need a certain amount of discipline because you are working with yourself,” he explains.
#“There is more stress on stage, because stage is performing live without any cuts” – Smita Jaykar – famous theatre personality, and Aishwarya Rai’s mother in the movie “Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam”.

February 6, 2009 at 7:04 am Leave a comment

Understanding + Honing your creative potential.

Today, career avenues for those with a creative bend of mind are innumerable. The list has expanded beyond traditional arts such as writing, dancing or theater, to encompass new and varied fields such as jewelery design, photography, industrial design and graphics design. This plethora of lucrative avenues makes it imperative for anyone who is looking into their career options, to examine their creative potential and consider methods of harnessing it.

Are you creative material?

You need to:
#Love to travel. There’s no better way of broadening your horizons and refreshing your outlook than travel. It exposes you to new people, customs, ideas and ways of living.
#Associate yourself with creative people. Look for people who are fun to talk to and have a keen sense of interest in life. #Be an individual who can stimulate your thought process is what you’re looking for.
#Interact with children. A child’s world is filled with fantasy, and yours can be too, if you interact with them. Try the association game. Playing with children will get you back in touch with your imagination.
#Love to read and write. But not all reading is good creative exercise. The key to using reading as a creative exercise is to read selectively and actively.
#Have a good sense of humor. Buy and read a few issues of magazines and have a go at writing some stories and cartoons. It will greatly enhance your powers of perception!

You should not:
#Be scared of trying out new things in life. Because ultimately art is nothing but seeing the same things in different ways.
Think in terms of “what will others say if I do it this way”.
#Work too hard. Surprised? Well it’s true, you need time away from a problem to be creative after periods of intense focus.

What can I do to enhance my creativity?

Improving your creativity is understanding and accepting the fact that you are a creative person, and that you can improve your creativity with practice and concentration, but first must come a basic belief in your ability to be creative.

To become more creative, you must nurture and learn to listen to your inner ‘voice’, your intuition. When involved in a pursuit requiring creative solutions, be open to a wide variety of possible solutions.

Don’t be afraid of failing within any given avenue of exploration; even a negative result from one line of questioning can lead to a new idea or possibility.

Study books on creative thinking techniques and put them into practice.

Keep a daily journal and record your thoughts, ideas, sketches, etc. as soon as you get them. Review your journal regularly and see what ideas can be developed.

Relax! Listen to music; indulge in sports to give your mind rest and time for the sub conscious to digest information. Develop an interest in a variety of different things, preferably well away from your normal sphere of interests. For example, read comic books or magazines you wouldn’t normally get. This keeps the brain busy with new things. It is a common trait of creative people that they are interested in a wide variety of subjects.

It really helps to think of creativity as a skill or set of skills. By practicing, one can get better at using them. So whenever you have a chance, try and do mundane things in novel ways- it will make them more entertaining and you will get more used to expressing your abilities.

January 9, 2009 at 10:48 am Leave a comment