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Avtar playing with Tarang in Dartington
Avtar playing with the Tarang orchestra in Dartington

Internal News - 12 October 2006

Student selected for national South Asian orchestra

Fourth year physics student, Avtar Singh, has been selected to join the UK’s leading South Asian orchestra, Tarang.

Following a round of auditions, Avtar became one of the orchestra’s ten musicians, and is the first to play both the Dilruba and the Taar Shehnai (both bowed stringed instruments).

On several occasions, Avtar has won the Sita Devi award for the best Hindustani performance at the Croydon music festival. He has also played at concerts, festivals, melas and other national competitions.

The aim of Tarang is to present new and dynamic musical creations to established and previously untapped audiences, and to underpin the development of South Asian music in the mainstream national culture.

The orchestra is overseen by Milapfest – the Arts Council sponsored body which promotes South Asian music throughout the world.

“Tarang provides a platform where musicians are given the chance to showcase their abilities, and help motivate a career in South Asian music,” said Avtar.

“Currently Tarang consists of Violin, Sitar, Veena, Tabla and Mirdingam players, and myself, the first and only Dilruba and Taar Shehnai player.

“The Tarang ensemble brings together two forms of South Asian music - Hindustani music from North India and Carnatic music from South India.

“The current ensemble has performed in Dartington, where we spent a whole week seeking training from world renowned maestros and artists. We eventually hope to perform world wide.”