Rice Radio Presents an Assorted South Asian Experience

The Jungle Book artists’ (above) on Rice radio and The Mayapuris (below) with KTRU’s Varsha Vakil

The Jungle Book artists’ (above) on Rice radio and The Mayapuris (below) with KTRU’s Varsha Vakil

HOUSTON: KTRU – Rice radio’s specialty show “Navrang” has been on-air for the past 22 years.  In recent years the show has been hosted by the passionate and perky radio DJ and director Varsha Vakil; she humbly dedicates her time and efforts to showcase talented artists’ of South Asian origin. KTRU’s Navrang show represents the fundamental nine colors or emotions of Indian music.

On August 23, Houstonians seeking eclectic music were introduced to the Kirtan genre presented by the reputed Florida based group “The Mayapuris”. Varsha asserts “The Mayapuris” to have single-handedly made Kirtan appealing, hip and current not only in the US but around the globe.

An on-air live performance dedicated in the praise of Sri Radha by lead singer – Visvambhar (Vish) drew a hypnotic spell.  The ktru studio came to life with the rhythmic beat of the drum – mridanga.  Krishna Kishore (Kish) introduced the bansuri (Indian flute). The elegant and melodious  bansuri resonated with the pious Indian traditions and culture. Varsha expressed the “live” kirtan experience as breathtaking.

On August 2, Houston’s talented young artists’ Nishant Kelkar (Mowgli), Medhavi Patwardhan (Village Woman), Avi Vir (Monkey),  Avilash Bhongir (Monkey),  Alani Forouzan (Wolf) and Maitri Misra (Wolf) from the play “The Jungle Book” embraced their novice radio escapade with a microphone and voiced their youthful experience. Varsha Vakil, the director of the Navrang show has earned accolades for her innate skill to ease the shy and thereby offer a candid, fun and impromptu discussion.

An earlier show welcomed adult artists’ from the play. Jeff Dorman and Alex Osburn presented a glimpse of their dynamic roles as Tabaqui – the cunning jackal and Akela – the father wolf respectively. Varsha applauds the energetic and witty children from the play for a fun and vivacious on-air conversation.