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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Musical meditation concert to highlight Hindu tradition

Combining world instruments for a unique experience, a musical meditation concert Thursday with the Juggernauts will feature instruments, chanting and storytelling derived from Hindu tradition.
The concert performers, Gaura Vani and Vishwambhar, travel the globe performing mantra music, a style based on Indian mantras, or chants.
Both Vani and Vishwambhar said they enjoy performing for college students and the event — “Sacred Sounds,” hosted by the Bhakti Yoga Club — should be lively and fun.
“It’s like a sacred party,” Vani said. “Music has such a capacity to bring people together regardless of different backgrounds.”
Vani said the group has toured on every continent but Antarctica with their music.
“The emphasis is put on building ourselves as whole beings and being fully invested in things at all times,” Vani said, explaining the Hindu mindset behind the mantra music.
Combining elements of their own personal backgrounds, as well as various styles and genres, Vishwambhar said he and Vani share a special bond when it comes to creating music together.
“We both grew up with one foot in each culture, in India and in America,” Vani said.
Catering to no specific genre or audience, Vishwambhar said the mantra music sound aims to be universal and eclectic.
“We focus on creating music that can go beyond the borders of certain genres,” Vishwambhar said.
Vani said there is a wide range of instruments and styles that have influenced their music.
“Music is what really brings people together and congregates a kind of brotherhood and sisterhood,” Vani said.
Beyond the music, Vishwambhar said they encourage crowd participation.
“Music is like decoration for the chants,” Vishwambhar said.
Vani said their shows feel like an entire crowd singing along at a rock concert.
“There’s a moment in every song where everyone is singing,” Vani said. “It’s really an incredible feeling.”
Having toured at other colleges in the United States, Vani and Vishwambhar said they have enjoyed finding common ground among college students of different backgrounds and religions.
“College students are inquisitive and ready for something fresh,” Vani said. “People who want to break down barriers between the sacred and the mundane, they should come.”
The Bhakti Yoga Club has only existed for three semesters, and this will be the first event of its kind, said Sarah Dang, chemical engineering sophomore and marketing and public relations team member for the Bhakti Yoga Club.
“This is pretty huge,” Dang said. “The only reason we are fortunate enough to have [Vani and Vishwambhar] come up is the Texas Yoga Concert this weekend in Houston.”
Having attended a similar mantra music event, Dang said she enjoyed the purity of the music and fun atmosphere.
“When you hear it, it fills up the entire room and brings a lot of energy,” Dang said.
The event will be at 6:30 p.m. Thursday in the Student Recreation Center Archery Room.

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