Kalimpong, Feb. 27: Come April and various cities in England and Scotland will sway to popular Hindi scores like A.R. Rahman’s version of Vande Mataram and Woh Chali adapted by the Bombay Vikings from R.D. Burman’s classic number in Padosan.
The popularity of the choir group of Dr Graham’s Homes here has earned them an invitation from its UK committee to perform in different cities there.
“The whole choir group of our school has been invited to perform in different cities of England and Scotland in April this year. Preparations for the trip have started and passports and visas are being readied for members of the group. The UK committee will fund the group’s stay which might run into three or four weeks,” said David Foning, the bursar of the school.
The choir group comprises 60 children who study in Classes III to XII. Led by Shan Saviel and Kamal Upasak, the group will perform in London, Glasgow, Dundee, Edinburgh and other major cities of England and Scotland. While Saviel is the choir-master, Upasak is the lead musician of the group. “The choir group has been regularly performing in Indian cities like Calcutta and Delhi. Last year, six of them had got the opportunity of performing and touring Japan for twelve days with the Dr Miyazaki Orchestra. This is the first time that the whole group will perform outside India,” Foning said.
According to the bursar, the group will not only present popular numbers, but will also try to showcase the culture of this place.
“At all the venues the group will present a small cultural show wearing costumes highlighting the ethnicity of different communities here,” said Foning. Through this step, the school wants to promote the area, even as the children gain from the exposure.
Speaking about how the choir group started, Foning said: “It all started in 1995 when the chairman of the board of directors and president of the school M.J. Robertson realised the group’s potential and chose to showcase its talent outside the school premises. Since then, the group has regularly performed at St Andrew’s Church and at St Paul’s Cathedral in Calcutta. Soon after, people started noticing them, and invitations began pouring in.” They also performed in front of the British High Commissioner and Governor Gopal Krishna Gandhi in Calcutta last year.
Last year, the choir group won The Telegraph award for school that excels in a particular field.