Home Columns Anantha Narayan Go digital, rasikas

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    Can’t make it to your favourite kutcheri? We bring you some web alternatives

    The city is thrumming with excitement with the Margazhi season underway. But for many, geography and that little something called ‘life’ are getting between them and their favourite performances. This is where we get to bring in some digital sunshine. We’ve come across webcasts and apps that will ensure you are tuned in from the comfort of your homes (possibly with a bowl of popcorn and some filter kaapi).

    Kalakendra, a portal dedicated to classical arts, has a package of 20 webcasts showcasing Karthik Fine Arts Club’s programmes. Priced at Rs 6,000, the webcasts will be on until January 2, 2014. The website is making sure the audio and video quality are of HD quality to give users the best possible experience. The portal has also teamed up with the Carnatic Music Association of North America to offer the package in the US for $125.

    Another player is the Charsur Arts Foundation, which is webcasting 24 concerts during the Margazhi season. “We aren’t doing any live webcasts because ensuring great audio and visual quality during the concerts is difficult,” says Suresh Gopalan, one of the trustees of Charsur. Instead, it’s focusing on video on demand, where users can buy the entire package for Rs 1,750.

    Finally, we bring you something innovative to keep you engaged this season—an app to test how keenly your ear is tuned to pick up ragas. RagaQuest is a free app released by IndianRaga (a portal that taps upcoming talent in music) in August. It gives you 30-second tracks of both Carnatic and Hindustani compositions. You then have to identify the raga using a hangman-esque technique. As your ears become more sensitive, you can keep upping your difficulty levels.

    — Surya Praphulla Kumar

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