When Armeen Musa gathered a bunch of enthusiastic and talented individuals for an ensemble in 2015, she was unsure of the direction she wanted to go with it. The popular singer-songwriter and Berklee graduate had already been in multiple choirs, and wanted to replicate the beauty of multiple vocal harmonies. What Armeen did end up with, however, was magical. Ghaashphoring Choir grew to become not just the most unique ensemble of raw talent, but a musical family.
Recently, 8 members from Ghaashphoring Choir had the opportunity to participate at the Berklee India Exchange (BIX) Bootcamp: Vocal Intensive for 5 days. The Berklee India Exchange is a cross-cultural exchange between India and Berklee College of Music, lauded as the 'Hogwarts of Music' by many. Celebrated musician and composer Annete Philip was the artistic director of the boot camp, which accommodated 107 singers from all over Asia. “This was a life-changing experience for me,” says Bishal Dhar, a young singer from Ghashphoring Choir. “The camp doesn't just concentrate on vocal drills, it ensures that you learn to maintain your body. I have met a lot of people from around the world here, and have opened up more as a person.”
“I am grateful to the Ministry of Cultural Affairs for partially sponsoring the trip,” says Armeen. The singer believes that music is much more than just passion, it is a lifestyle choice. Most of the young talents from the group agreed that the biggest flaw in Bangladesh's music industry is that it accepts mediocrity. “They (Indian singers) dedicate their lives to music, and never forget their roots,” says Zamiul Alam, another talented musician from Ghaashphoring.
The participants of the camp got to partake in three performances, out of which one was a 'special' audition-only entry. Four members from Ghaashphoring Choir, including Armeen, performed in the song.
Off the heels of what was an enlightening experience, what are the future plans for this immensely talented group? “As long as we are performing together, we want to keep serving the music that we do,” says a thoughtful Armeen Musa. The ensemble is currently working on their first solo album, which will contain unique renditions of beloved songs. If the band's past work is something to go by, we are about to receive something incredibly special from the ensemble of voices filled with love and laughter.