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Poly Varghese
United States
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About: poly vargherse
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Poly Varghese...

Poly Varghese was initially trained at Kerala Kalamandalam, Kerala's paramount center for training in classical arts. He specialized in Mridangam, the main component of percussion in Southern classical music. He pursued his quest for music at Visva Bharati University, Santiniketan in the northeastern state of India, West Bengal, with a unique opportunity and access to learn various instruments, stringed as well as percussion. His growing interest in Rabindra Sangeet and love for Hindustani music probed him to specialize in playing Hindustani music on the electric guitar.

A chance meeting with Pandit Viswa Mohan Bhatt made him fall head over heels in adoration with the Mohan Veena. Once he got introduced to the maestro and his creation, Poly dedicated all resources to learn and practice the magic called Mohan Veena! Guidance and tutelage from Pandit Bhatt have provided Poly with clarity in perspective and practice. This emerging musician has a number of concerts to his credit both in India and abroad, including the Gulf, Europe, and almost 43 countries he has traveled to.

He is also keenly interested in Dhrupad music, one of the ancient music forms of Indian culture, and he learned Dhrupad from the great maestros of this era, the Gundecha brothers (Pt. Ramakant and Umakant).

He has played for "Sugamana Ragangal" telecast on Doordarshan, Chennai. His recent performances include those at the Arab Cultural Centre Sharjah, as part of the Arab-India cultural exchange organized by the Government of Sharjah, at Adishakti Ashram (headed by renowned theatre exponent Veenapani Chawla), in Pondicherry, and at the Centre for Experiencing Socio-Cultural Interaction in Madurai. Poly traveled in Europe, playing at Vienna and Graz in Austria, performed with popular gypsy musicians, and acclaimed guitarist Andreas Glasner. In August this year, Poly Varghese has been invited by the India International Center New Delhi (IIC Delhi) for the prestigious Monsoon Music Festival. During this trip, he performed in the "Mehfil" at Dhrupad musician Subhendu Ghosh's residence in Delhi South Campus.

While perfecting and pursuing the depths of music with the Mohan Veena, he has developed his own inimitable style of improvisation. He has started composing and playing his creations. Poly's unique experiences and experiments in creating music have propelled him to develop the 40-stringed three-neck guitar, which he has named "Poly String Guitar" (Bahuthantri Veena).

His long-term interest in the traditions and disciplines of music and theatre finds expression in varied forms. Having traveled with Baul singers of West Bengal, he is familiar with their music and loves to render high-pitched Baul songs. He is trained in Kabir songs under Pt. Heera Singh Borliya. He is also trained in Rabindra Sangeet.

He is known as the one and only link of the great Maihar Gharana in South India.

With acclaimed talent in acting, Poly is involved in experimental theatre for several years. He has worked with theater exponents Krishnamurthy, Badal Sircar, and Nasser in India. He has acted in plays of different languages and has played noteworthy roles in Tamil films.

Poly has composed music for films and theatre alike. In 2005, he won the Jeevan Atlas Award for Best Music Director of the year for the Malayalam film "Kootilekku" (Towards Home). He was fortunate to do an apprenticeship with the famous South Indian music director G. Devarajan.

Poly Varghese is also a well-known poet in Malayalam. He has been noted as one of the surrealistic poets. His poems are translated into English, Tamil, Bengali, Hindi, and some of the poems are discussed on British poetry radio too.

Born in Kerala, besides his mother tongue Malayalam, Poly has a sufficiently good working knowledge of English, Tamil, Hindi, Bengali, and Oriya.
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