Swar Sparsh: Spreading divinity through their devotional music

The group aims to create a musical platform for artists from Goa
Prajyot Dessai and his Swar Sparsh group members performing at Shree Shantadurga temple in Calangute during the auspicious month of Shrawan.
Prajyot Dessai and his Swar Sparsh group members performing at Shree Shantadurga temple in Calangute during the auspicious month of Shrawan.

Music is a creation of human emotion that adds beauty to the madness in us. Music makes us happy and at times sad, and that is why many see it unfold barriers to enable us to connect with the divine. Such divinity is experienced during Ganesh Chathurthi on the Konkan belt where people rush in numbers to get themselves treated to devotional singing performances at Sarvajanik Ganeshotav mandals.

One such musical group that is bringing divinity to your doorsteps this Ganesh Chaturthi is Swar Sparsh -- which means a touch of the musical notes -- with its classical Hindustani music performances.

Prajyot Dessai and his Swar Sparsh group members performing at Shree Shantadurga temple in Calangute during the auspicious month of Shrawan.
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This group is the brainchild of Prajyot Dessai who is a tabla trainer at the Kala Academy, Goa. Dessai started learning tabla at the tender age of 4 from his maternal grandfather late Sitaram Mandrekar. He was admitted to Swartaal Vidhyalay under the tutelage of Surya Yeshwant Shetye, a renowned tabla player from Goa when he was six. He learned from Shetye from 1995 to 2009.

Later, Dessai took admission to the Goa College of Music in 2010 and completed his bachelor's degree and subsequently masters degree in the Performing Arts specializing in tabla under the guidance of late Mayuresh Vast, Pt Ulhas Velingkar, Pt Amod Dandge and Nikhil Bhagat from Kolhapur.

Prajyot Dessai and his Swar Sparsh group members performing at Shree Shantadurga temple in Calangute during the auspicious month of Shrawan.
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Dessai’s first performance was at the Swartal Vidhyalay’s Gurupornima Utsav in 1996. He later went on to show his skills at Hrunanubandh Sangeet Sammelan under Swarshree Goa Association. Dessai was also part of the performance which made it to the Guinness Book of World Records.

As an artist from Goa, Dessai has played alongside Pt Milind Raikar, a world-renowned violinist and vocalists like Ramkrishna Verlekar, late Purushottam Honnavarkar, Sandesh Khedekar, Pralhad Hadfadkar, Uday Parshekar, Prachala Amokar among others.

Dessai told Gomantak Times that his main objective behind making such music is to revive the musical days of legendary musicians like Pt Jitendra Abhisheki, Pt Bhimsen Joshi and Sudhir Phadkeetc to name a few.

Prajyot Dessai and his Swar Sparsh group members performing at Shree Shantadurga temple in Calangute during the auspicious month of Shrawan.
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The group performs in the private “mehfil” and even at concerts. Recently, Dessai and his group decided to make use of social media platform like YouTube through which they perform live.

This group consists Goan youth. Rishikesh Naik plays tabla; Bhavesh Naik plays harmonium; Maheshwar Gadekar plays Pakhawaj; Suraj Patil assists them on the majira. The group focuses on the abhangas written by Hindu saints.

This newly formed musical group received a good response from the people across Goa and had several private concerts lined up during Ganesh Chaturthi.

Dessai said his main objective is to create a platform for artists from Goa through this group.

Prajyot Dessai and his Swar Sparsh group members performing at Shree Shantadurga temple in Calangute during the auspicious month of Shrawan.
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