What a show! I have to give a hats off to Manda, a young and energetic quartet indirectly related to Mitrata-Nepal through the son of flutist and Mitrata instructor Raman Maharjan. They came on thick and heavy at the 3rd Kathmandu Children Artist Club concert today in Sanepa, driving their youthful brand of Nepali folk into a peak fit to rival the 8000'ers. My eyes teared up when the flute solo hit.
Manda was out showing support for a happy bunch of young performers today at a venue organized by the Kathmandu International Music Society. The featured performers included Mitrata-Nepal among several local children's organizations. Mitrata opened with Bajrayogini, a beautiful Nepali classical dance marked by ornate costumes and focused, emotive movements as the performers mimic the tantric goddess Yoginis showering their devotees with blessings.
Chitra, one of Mitrata-Nepal's aspiring flutists, took the limelight during the upbeat flute and madal performance of Lekali Ho. The way he bobbed his head to the drum beat as the melody flowed out of him caused a stir of tapping feet and clapping hands in the audience. Chitra was beaming later when Mr. Kunio Takahashi, Japanese ambassador to Nepal, took the stage to congratulate the children and handed him a bouquet of flowers.
It was really a special moment for the Mitata kids. The amazing show by Manda was a fine example of what the future could hold. Performing so gracefully at such a young age, there's really no limit to what these kids can do. Inspiration continued when Nepali classical guitarist Kishor Gurung made an appearance to talk about Nepali music's untapped potential. Musical education has been overlooked until recently in the Nepali curriculum. Only two Nepalis have ever studied music at the PhD level. With a diverse and rich body of instruments, music, and dance styles, Nepal is ripe for an artistic revolution of sorts. Could the children of Mitrata-Nepal be at the peak of this wave? We hope that participating in events like this one will inspire them to continue honing their skills and awing audiences. The cultural significance of these arts can not be overlooked, and as our societies evolve and new possibilities emerge, we're sure that the skills our children have learned with Mitrata-Nepal and the help of all our gracious supporters will serve them in ways that transcend our imaginations.