Cultural Arts Spring Festival Kick Off with Devotional Fervor: Vishaka Hari

Houston: Vishaka Hari needs no introduction.  She narrates stories from the Hindu Puranas (Katha) in many languages (including English), making them come alive with musical compositions (Keerthana) of famous singing saints of India.  Her narrative style is simple which she uses skillfully to make esoteric ideas come within everyone’s reach. The musical and expressive elements she brings in context creates the devotional mood instinctively.  Her genius in ancient scriptural texts, classical music and dance is truly a tribute to her gurus, Sri Krishna Premi, Sri Lalgudi Jayaraman and Srimathi Sudharani Raghupathy respectively, all of them being exemplary teachers.

Vishaka is progressive in many ways, yet traditional.  This quote from The Hindu says it all:

What strikes you is the nine yards drape over a frail figure; what surprises you is the impeccable English; you get closer to take a peek into her background and find Vishaka Hari is a Chartered Accountant, an “A” grade Carnatic musician, was a Bharatanatyam danseuse before she married into Sri Krishna Premi’s traditional household. 

All her life’s experiences, including her grade school education at a catholic school, Rosary Matriculation, has made Vishaka into this amazing story teller that she is today; It is no wonder that Vishaka has won several prestigious awards.  Vishaka is also the founder of “VIJAYASHRI SCHOOL OF HARIKATHA” – A School to promote the art of Harikatha and a platform to promote Indian culture and dharma.

Classical Arts Society of Houston will kick off its spring festival with Vishaka Hari’s musical story telling (in ENGLISH) titled “The bliss of Gita, the joy of Sangita”.   Vishaka Hari expertly juxtaposes the teachings of Bhagavad Gita, focusing on Chapter 12, with the inspired compositions of the pan-Indian saint composers of the 18th century, the saints of the Maratha Bhakti movement and that of the devotees portrayed in the Bhagavata Puranas.  This highly musical Harikatha narration and all explanations by Vishaka are in English.   The musical selections are multilingual – Sanskrit, Telugu, Tamil, Hindi and Marathi.  Set to be premiered on Jan 17, 2021, Classical Arts Society extends a warm welcome to all audiences for this Bhakthi inspired free event marking an auspicious start for the new year, coinciding with the auspicious occurrence of Makara Sankranti (the transit of sun into Capricorn from cancer) and the harvest festival of Pongal in Tamil Nadu.

Please visit and like our Facebook page (Classical Arts Society of Houston) to stay tuned.

Your donations to our organization will help us continue to bring quality programs in the future.

Spring festival events that are in our pipeline are as follows:

Saturday, February 7, 10 am CST – Tyagaraja Aradhana

Saturday, March 6 – Lecture by Chennai’s famous historian Mr. V. Sriram on “Tyagaraja’s Thiruvaiyaru”

Wednesday, April 14 – a Tamil Musical concert to celebrate Tamil New Year’s day