12 Songs,12 Languages, of 12 World Cultures Unleashed at ‘Transcending Boundaries’

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12 Songs,12 Languages, of 12 World Cultures Unleashed at ‘Transcending Boundaries’- a Music Concert with Songs by ESHAN FERNANDES from Vancouver, Canada arranged by MANDD SOBHANN to mark WORLD MUSIC DAY 2022

Mangaluru: It was a unique kind of Concert experience by the Music Lovers of Mangaluru, where they were treated to different kinds of music from around the world. It was an opportunity to be exposed to the sounds of music from various cultures and nations around the world in 12 songs, featuring 12 languages. And the Concert was “TRANSCENDING BOUNDARIES” which was an attempt to go beyond one’s language and to assert the universality of music.

And the YOUNG MAN behind this unique musical treat was ESHAN FERNANDES, an origin of Mangaluru now pursuing his studies in Materials Engineering at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada. He is the son of Alwyn Fernandes, a Master Guitarist hailing from Mangaluru- and the Grandson of Eric Ozario-the Gurkar of Mandd Sobhann.

Eshan’s true passion, however, lies in the study of history, linguistics, and the other factors that manifest humanity, culture and belief. Taking Konkani to International heights is another goal that he wants to pursue, and towards that, he is researching the Konkani language, Konkani arts, History, Culture and Traditions. And to unleash his music talents, Eshan had picked the right day which marks “International Music Day or World Music Day” which is annually observed on 21 June to honour musicians and singers. The day also encourages young and amateur musicians to give a live demonstration of their talent to audiences.- and “Transcending Boundaries” was fit suitably.

L-R : Alwyn Fernandes, Stephen Frank, Eshan Fernandes & Melwyn Fernandes

This year the theme for the World Music Day 2022 was “Music on the intersections”, and Music lovers on June 21, 2022, celebrated their love of music by attending music concerts/plays or by simply listening to the music they love- and locally Music Lovers of Mangalurun were treated to a unique Music Concert performed by Eshan and his group, at the “Transcending Boundaries” held at Kalaangann, Shakthinagar, Mangaluru on Tuesday, 21 June 2022 at 6:30 pm.

The Concert left the house-packed audience enthralled when Eshan performed 12 songs in 12 languages from 12 different cultures of the World, giving the evening at the auditorium a truly international flavour. Deriving inspiration from his grandfather Eric Ozario -the indefatigable crusader for Konkani language and culture; and also from his father Alwyn Fernandes an internationally famed guitarist, Eshan took the vision of Mandd Sobhann of thinking locally and dreaming globally to rare heights. Interestingly, all three are self-taught musicians, though they have been associated with legendary poets and musicians.

At one of the rare concerts Mangaluru music lovers experienced, Eshan sang songs in rare languages, such as Bambara, Cape Verde Creole, Hebrew and Armenian, not to mention a soulful song by Chafra and Eric in Konkani, and even a song written by Eshan himself in Kazhak. In these songs, Eshan spoke about love and peace, joy and sorrow, pain and forgiveness, of loss and recuperation, of human journeys, of longing to belong, accompanied by sensitive and scholarly commentaries on the linguistic and historical contexts of these songs.

Transcending Boundaries featured 4 P’s- Pulse (Alwyn Fernandes on Guitar), Piano (Stephen Frank ), Percussion (Melwyn Fernandes) and Paint (Wilson Souza, who joined together to make a truly magical and unforgettable evening, and a rare international event-a FIRST of ist kind in Kodiyal aka Kudla aka Mangaluru-the Rome of the East!

The tracklist for the evening were- Bambara (Bakonoba); Arabic (Kalaam); Swedish (Den Standiga Resan); Italian (Jules); Portuguese-Creole (Odjus Fitxadu); Konkani (Birnddam); Spanish (Todas Las Palabras); Hindustani (Tujhe Bhuka Diya); English (Whole); Kazakh (Mundastarym); Hebrew (Balaya) and Armenian (Es Kulam).

Apart from the music artists giving their best, yet another star attraction of the evening was art creator Wilson Souza, who mesmerized the audience with his artistic hand painting talents, where he captured the songs on canvas. Born in Kayyar, in the Kasargod district, Wilson is an alumnus of Mahasala School of Art, Mangaluru. He has been honoured at the Konkani Janapad Utsav by the Karnataka Konkani Sahitya Academy and conferred the Sadhana Award by Emirates Konkans.

Wilson believes in creating art that inspires. His paintings have a bold theme and mostly concentrate on feminine themes capturing the interplay of nature and the female form. Wilson’s romance with feminine themes has become his trademark narrative style. It is characterized by semi-abstract strokes of bold colours, rendering it an amalgam of fantasy and reality.

His artistic twelve paintings were auctioned at the end of the show, where each painting fetched a price between Rs 10,000 to Rs 12,000, and one bidder Roy Castelino, the Founder of Mandd Sobhann and former President of Karnataka state Konkani Sahitya Academy, who took home a painting for Rs 10K, supporting a good cause. Ms Gloria Veigas was at the helm of the auction, who did her best in convincing and motivating the crowd to support a good cause.

Eric Ozario handed over the paintings to the highest bidder and thanked them for their generosity. Louis Pinto, the President of Mandd Sobhann felicitated Eshan, Alwyn, Stephen, Melwyn and Wilson with a bouquet of flowers. The programme was meticulously and professionally compered by Dr Ravishankar Rao, a former English professor at Mangalore University, and a great Toastmaster.

In conclusion, this unique performance by Eshan backed by Alwyn, Stephen and Melwyn was filled with a potency that gave the music life and vibrancy, and together they tore into it with an intensity that was overwhelming, and this team whose personal connection lends poignancy to their music and spark to their performances. They had a colourful embodiment of talents that spread positivity around them, and their performances and their music brought a sense of freshness which grabbed the listener with newfound energy. Their music was so well blended, that the audience experienced the honey-like smooth consistency in it. The power of each song performed was just exceptional – awesome vocals, awesome arrangement of instruments. Simply superb; Great music. The artists were awesome at what they did.

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