A unique combination of Beethoven and Indian culture, through instruments, enthralled the audience present at Goethe-Institut recently. The Cosmos Project, featuring musicians Shani Diluka on the piano, Sahana Banerjee on the sitar, and Prabhu Edouard on the tabla, explored the spiritual relationship between Beethoven, a German composer and pianist, and India, through music – something that has seldom been explored in a concert or recording.
This was the first time the three of them, who are accomplished musicians in their respective fields, performed together and made it a premiere of The Cosmos Project. The pieces performed in the evening were – Beethoven, Moonlight Sonata op.27, Appassionata Sonata op.57. A selection of Indian ragas was also performed in the evening.
Beethoven could not hear his own music for most of his life and deeply suffered because of it. Hence, he was looking for a spiritual connection, and often wrote about things that inspired him in his notebook. One of the texts was the Upanishaad, a translation of the mystical Indian texts published in Germany in 1816. The Cosmos Project is an amalgamation of the West and the East that tends to explore this relationship between Beethoven and Indian classical music.
“We hope to pay tribute to peace and tolerance through music,” said Shani Diluka. “Every culture has beauty in it and it is important to be spiritual to be able to see the beauty, which is possible with music.”