Savleen Kaur Fascinates the Germans by Singing A Christmas Song
Niederwürschnitz (Germany) (Free Press/Von Cristina Zehrfeld/ Photo: A. Tannert) : The 14-year-old Savleen Kaur from Stollberg plays the Christmas concert of the International High School Niederwürschnitz the most famous Christmas carol. Special feature: It interprets "Silent Night" on a sitar.
If Savleen Kaur plays "Silent Night", the well-known melody is heard. Who looks but on their score, the Christmas song will hardly recognize. "I have my notes translated into Indian" said the eighth grader. What is needed is that because Savleen plays the sitar, the most famous melody instrument of North Indian music, and therefore also uses the Indian central system which basically differs from the known to us breakdown of the tonal range of an octave. For Savleen this is a reflection on their Indian roots, because while she is even born in Stollberg and raised in Oelsnitz, her parents are from the northern Indian city of Ludhiana. Like many other followers of the Sikh religion they have left their homes in the 1990s because of the systematic persecution. Today they run a Pizzeria in Oelsnitz.
At the age of five years Savleen learned her first instrument, the Indian harmonium, in which one hand the melody is played while the other hand operates the bellows. Since then, she is also familiar with the Indian notes. The typical Indian music knows Savleen from home, where the Indian harmonium is used as an accompanying instrument for singing and the mother sitar playing every now and then. Savleen had therefore already begun to learn the tabla, a North Indian percussion instrument. However, the requirements for the rhythm you were then too high. The really great enthusiasm came half a year ago: "In May, I've experienced in Dresden concert with the sitar player Anoushka Shankar," says Savleen. Anoushka Shankar is the daughter of Ravi Shankar, who carried the sound of the sitar for his work with The Beatles and the violinist Yehudi Menuhin in the world. On these tracks would like at some point Savleen Kaur convert.
"The Indian classical music is not like any other music. Unfortunately, it is almost forgotten. So I want to make it known again." Not an easy task, because so little as the sitar can be played by the local staff, so little is the instrument insert in a one here Ensemble.
"I tried to integrate the sitar in the school band, but it is so exotic that they can only be used as a solo instrument," admits a music teacher and choir director Manina Poitz. And so Savleen can either together with all other sing in the choir, but with the sitar is a soloist. Eventually, they will also play typical Indian music, called Raga with your own unique melodic basic structure.
Yet it must be these pieces too difficult. Savleen: "My mother taught me something, but unfortunately I find here no teacher is also a problem that my sitar can be repaired only in India.." But Manina Poitz inspires the student: "Our current motto is be there for each other 'for me would at school concerts sometimes an Indian song in question.."
The sitar player Savleen Kaur, together with 90 other students in the sixth December Christmas Concert of the International high school experience in the Niederwürschnitzer Church.