By Hashir Mohakked Khaled, Kolkata, Feb 7 IBNS | 6 months ago

The US Consulate Kolkata on Thursday hosted American singer, songwriter and fiddler, Laura Cortese and 'The Dance Card', as a part of the American Music Abroad (AMA) program to communicate the country's musical contribution and diverse culture, here at the American Center.


During the visit the US Consulate engaged with the local Bengali folk music band, 'Brahmakhyapa', featuring Malabika Brahma and Dev Sahajiya.

The engagement with nonpareil local musicians will culminate in a collaborative performance on Friday that also pledges an eclectic fusion of American and Bengali roots music traditions.

The American contingent and 'The Dance Card' included Laura Cortese, Mariel Vandersteel, Valerie Thompson and Marc Thayer.

The Dance Card is an all female string group brought together by the love of traditional American Music and the myriad of ways in which it can be expressed in a chamber folk setting.

The Dance Card had toured the U.S and Europe, performing in every imaginable setting from farmer, market to music festival and house concert to concert halls while hosting workshop on fiddling, grooving, dancing and singing.

All the members went of The Dance Card went through rigorous training at The Berklee College of Music which not only bought a reverence to tradition but an innovative creativity to the music that they make.

Their hard works include Old Time, Bluegrass Country and Celtic music.

Laura Cortese, who has emerged as one of the most intriguing and versatile musician in the New England post folk scene originating from rich fiddle community of San Francisco, said that she is very much grateful to bring her band to Kolkata.

"The main reason for this is that music is dominating these days. In modern times where music also conveys a good message also," Cortese added.

She noted that recently she released her third full length studio album called, 'Into The Dark'.

'Malabika Brahma the lead vocalist and composer of Brahmakhyapa said the "Love, live and let live" is the true mantra of her philosophy and also said that music plays a pivotal role these days in film, and that is why she gave music her priority.

Later on, Malabika Brahma was awarded a certificate from the American Centre Director Joanne Joria for her stunning work named One Beat.

Now, The Dance Card is eyeing a visit to Kazakstan, Uzbekistan and Bangladesh which will be their conclusion trip.

(Posted on 07-02-2014)