ABOUT THE PROJECT
A Community Arts Centre is a place where people can fulfil the need to serve others and do it in a way that they feel is the highest level in their profession.We believe that the study of music and arts enriches not only the life of the student but the community and society as well.
The mission of Swara Community Arts Centre is to develop and nurture an education in classical Indian music for all who have the passion to learn. Through the establishment of this Community Arts Centre, we hope to expand the horizons of music in the country by creating an awareness of and strengthening the art of Indian music and its presence in Malaysia. We aspire to fill the cultural landscape of our community and to build an artistic space for Malaysian youths, nurturing and supporting them for an extended term of concentrated artistic activity.
However, a single person, no matter how successful or passionate, cannot single-handedly fund and sustain a cultural institution of this size. Hence, the centre intends to leverage upon a community initiative to offer private music lessons at a reasonable cost and grant scholarships to children in need, providing free lessons and instruments.
By inviting the broader public to contribute to our early development, it helps to affirm and build the engaged community necessary for sustaining SWARA Community Arts Centre into the future.
With your contribution, you become a founder of the academy not only financially, but also conceptually, by partaking in the very experiences we hope to create for audiences and performers to interact. The funds from the community will cover the first phase of SWARA Community Arts Centre's development which is the acquisition of the space where the Centre will be situated.
Your pledge will contribute to SWARA's initial operation for the first 24 months after which we aspire to be a self sustaining community funded by the fee paying student population.
We aim to create a global community of collaborators and want you to be part of it. We hope that an equally passionate public will join in contributing to phase one of the project. We'd like you to be a part of our extended family network. building bridges for families to continue being the foundation of our existence.
Pledge.Volunteer. Support. Advocate
A pitcher/pledger does not need a PayPal account to pitch or pledge. What he/she needs is a credit card (Mastercard/Visa) or a debit card.
However, if you are not comfortable doing an online pitch/pledge - you can transfer the money directly to the pitchIN account as follows:
WATCHTOWER AND FRIENDS SDN.BHD
WATCHTOWER AND FRIENDS SDN BHD is the company that owns and runs pitchIN.
However, the person must send pitchIN the proof of transfer by attaching the receipt to the email address: firstname.lastname@example.org with the Subject Heading: SWARA. Upon receiving that, the folks at pitchIN can then quickly update the project page.
Thank you again and we do hope you will support the project!
List of Pitchers
List of all people who had pitched/pledge money to this project
Samuel J. Dass
Samuel J. Dass, or Sam as he is fondly known in the music circle, was born on the 16th of March, and started his love affair with the Sitar at the tender age of 7. His first guru was his father, Mr. Jabamalai Dass, who drilled in him the basics of sitar playing. He then joined The Temple of fine Arts Malaysia, where he learnt the finer nuances of this traditional art-form from Mr. Maheswaran Orme. At the same time he also sought the guidance of Giani Bachitar Singh, who inculcated in him the characteristics of the various Hindustani Raagas. He also underwent training from Mr. Raj Kumar Sharma and Professor Haridev of Chandighar University under whom he was able to obtain the 'Sageeth Bushan' which is equivalent to a senior diploma in music. In the year 2002, Sam had the good fortune to study the finer intricacies of the sitar under the world renowned sitar maestro Ustad Shahid Parvez in Pune,India. He was under Shahidji's guidance for 7 months and his talent was acknowledged by the senior musician himself. Sam has been proclaimed as one of our times most exciting sitar players and has left audiences around the world mesmerized by his style of 'gayaki ang', meaning literally "to 'play as though sung". He has done much for Hindustani music in Malaysia, infusing both classical and contemporary genres in sitar recitals and coming out with inventive & creative albums. Sam has an uncanny ability to bring alive the subtle nuances and melodic beauty hidden in the soaring notes of the ragas in elegant and even cheeky interpretations. Imbibed with catholicity and flair, his style, although traditional in nature, has an artistic intelligence geared to the refinements and sophistication needed in the modern world. Defining Sam as a sitarist would be of great disservice to an individual who has added immensely to the expansion of Indian music in Malaysia. He has been performing since he was a teenager and has strove to introduce music genres that were quite alien to the masses. Over a decade ago, he initiated ghazal (light classical music native to northern India) and taught himself to play the santoor (hammered dulcimer) into concert halls here. During this journey, he became the first Malaysian musician to turn away from classical Indian group music recitals and opted for instrumental solo concerts in Malaysia.
As a composer, Sam has released 7 albums to date. They are Sitarasa, Sitarasa Nostalgia, Vrajalila, Biography of Swami Sivananda, Vidiyal, Raga Moods and Prana The two honours that he was awarded at the Cameronian Arts Awards 2004 - for the best original composition and best solo performance categories under his band Prana - is a belated recognition much deserved. Sam has had the good fortune of playing with some of the top musicians in Malaysia and abroad. He recently represented Malaysia for the World Championship of Performing Arts in Hollywood, Los Angeles, USA. He won 7 gold medals and one silver medal for the eight categories he took part in. He also won 7 Champion of the World plaques and was the only one from the Malaysian team to be chosen to compete in the Grand Championships which was held at the world famous Palladium Auditorium. Besides the US, Sam has also performed in Australia, Singapore, Brunei and India. Sam's dedication to this ancient art form is total and the art world is richer by his experience, expertise and most importantly, devotion.