How the rain gods sounded a discordant note in the symphony of the much awaited GBF orchestra night.
The YPO performance at GBF 2015 was much anticipated by everyone, most of all, by the performers. If you peeked behind the curtains during a rehearsal in Pune, you would see that YPO rehearsals resemble a wrestler akhada more than an orchestra. Old habits die hard. Folks in their 40s, 50s and 60s become nostalgic and fight over how their hostel in their time was musically superior to the other guy’s hostel and had beaten them at so-and-so inter-hostel competition, and how that girl in your team was cute looking, but used to sing two full notes below the original Lata Mangeshkar scale, and so on and so forth. Once on stage, however, we set aside all existential disputes about chords, scales, rhythms and present a picture of perfect harmony and professionalism (well, almost).
The venue at GBF in Goa was superlative, to say the least. An open air lawn, by the sea. At a distance one could see the lights of a port. A slight breeze made the weather pleasant for a change. The bar was ready with the right stuff for everyone. The audience was slowly taking their places. And we were all ready on the stage – tabla, dholak, congo, bongo, accordion, saxophone, guitar, flute, octapad, keyboards. Mike check? OK. Feedback speaker? OK. Main speakers? OK. Reverb for saxophone? OK. Compere has the script worked out? OK. Weather? OK (?????). No last minute hiccups. Everyone was ready for the blast off.
If you peeked behind the curtains during a rehearsal in Pune, you would see that YPO rehearsals resemble a wrestler akhada more than an orchestra.
However, a wrong kind of blast off occurred. One had heard of inclement weather in the mountains, and in higher latitudes. But this was Goa, in the month of October. Rain was obviously not on anyone’s mind. Yet, the laws of probability became amply clear that day – there is no law of nature which says that it cannot rain in Goa in October. And so it did rain in Goa in October.
As our first singer started to get into the mood, and get the audience in the groove, the Rain God also decided to express his emotions with a shower. So one moment we were warming up for a great evening, the next moment we were running to protect our precious instruments from the downpour.
All was not lost – the rain stopped as abruptly as it had started. The performers resumed their positions on the stage. The audience took their places next to the bar. As the next song was heard by everyone, the randomness of nature was in full fury and a heavier shower tore through the show.
The laws of probability became amply clear that day – there is no law of nature which says that it cannot rain in Goa in October. And so it did rain in Goa in October.
Sadly, by now the mood was adequately dampened, and the show had to be cancelled after just 3 songs.
Nonetheless, it was a great effort by the organisers to get the YPO at GBF. There should always be something to look forward to, and we sure look forward to YPO at GBF 2016.
About the authors:
Jaideep runs his own company, Simulytics Services, in Pune. The company provides software products for logistics and supply chain. With 20 years of experience, Jaideep has also worked with large firms such as Asian Paints and JP Morgan Chase. He is passionate about music, especially old Hindi songs and Hindustani classical music. He plays the rhythm guitar for Y-Point Orchestra. He is known to be stubborn about chords and scales, much to the chagrin of other YPO musicians. Apart from music, Jaideep is a regular at marathons in Delhi and Mumbai. Jaideep has a B. Tech. from IIT Bombay and a P.G.D.M. from IIM Lucknow.
Nandu Kulkarni is an independent consultant in Banking and Payments Technology, with over 35 years of experience in managing IT product and services businesses. Nandu is a keen student of Hindustani Classical Music and runs a website called ShadjaMadhyam.com, dedicated to Classical Music. He is one of the founders of a light music orchestra of IIT Bombay Alumni called “Y-Point Orchestra”. At GBF, he was an executive lead for the ICT SIG and was involved with organising the panel discussions and start-up presentations. He also organised the Round Table Discussion for the Industry-IIT community engagement model.