Aishu Venkataraman, child prodigy, brilliant musician and pediatric neurosurgeon has a passion for the violin that transcends the boundaries from the western hemisphere to the far east. While continuing to play South Indian classical music, Aishu carries the distinction of being the youngest student accepted into the Berklee College of Music where she graduated with a Bachelors of Arts Degree in Jazz Performance
Current Concert Offerings: I offer three unique and very different styles of concert experience.
The Divine Strings Orchestra is comprised of two components, a traditional South Indian ensemble and fifteen-piece Western Classical Chamber group. The repertoire of the orchestra includes traditional Carnatic pieces placed in an orchestral setting. A typical concert performed by the Divine Strings Orchestra will follow the Aryakudi style of Concert Paddhati beginning with a Varnam, followed by melodic pieces called Kirtanams, an elaborate Ragam-Tanam-Pallavi concluding with a Mangalam.
A unique blend of South Indian and Western classical music, more in the vein of Beethoven meets Saint Thyagaraja, traditional South Indian scales called ragams are harmonized or ornamented without compromising the precision or the aesthetics of either musical genre. Each piece has its own instrumental texture that is either Indian or Western, Indian with a harmonized drone played by the western ensemble or Indian with traditional heterophonic response—Indian melodies that are instantly followed and elaborated by the western ensemble in a kind of musical cat and mouse game with a wonderful, not quite homogenous texture. As a result of these textures, the Divine Strings Orchestra is a creative, clever and clear interpretation of the musical cultures of India and the West, both alone and together.
Delhi Fresh is a five-piece jazz combo band, which answers the question, “What happens when east meets west?” In a delightfully innovative blend of sound, style and culture, Delhi Fresh offers a new take on this crossover genre by seamlessly blending the harmony and repertoire of modern jazz with the tradition and improvisational techniques of South Indian Classical music.
Carnatic Solo Performance: In collaboration with artists from India, I also offer a very traditional South Indian style violin performance which includes accompaniment on Mridangam, Ghatam, Kanjira and Moorsing.