There is a need for internationalisation of Indian classical music – Ratish Tagde

There are several challenges which musicians face and there is little awareness among them about their rights and privileges. Tagde to speak at International Freelance Conference in Copenhagen this month.

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Though now, artists have greater freedom in terms of creating, distributing, marketing and selling music, and as they can even do it all from the comfort of their homes due to digital technology. But there are several challenges which musicians face and there is little awareness among them about their rights and privileges.

Organized by International Federation of Musicians, Paris and Danish Musicians Union, International Freelance Conference in Copenhagen, aims at deliberating these issues faced by musicians world over and much more.

 

Ratish Tagde

International Federation of Musicians is an organization spread across 70 countries, the Indian chapter, known as Musicians Federation of India, has accomplished violinist, Ratish Tagde as its President.

Ratish has been invited as one of the speakers at the conference, while recently he had attended ‘Economy of Streaming’ conference jointly organized by the International Federation of Musicians and American Federation of Musicians in Los Angeles.

“It is great opportunity to indulge in deliberations with musicians and musicologists from around the globe hear them speak on their music,” said Ratish, adding, “also, we can learn about systems followed in the West regarding copyrights, royalties and revenue generation modules for musicians.”

Professionals, including NGOs and unions of musicians, musicologists from the USA, Sweden, France, Australia, UK, Netherland, Brazil, Romania, Finland, Germany etc. will be attending the conference.

Presently, musicians across the world are deprived of many commercial opportunities because of lack of knowledge and commercial acumen coupled with unethical practices by music companies.

Royalty payments, rights, health & safety, insurance, government support, the role of copyright societies, career options for students of music are major issues likely to be discussed at the conference.

Conferences such as these, promote constructive discussions and pass resolutions for pursuing UNESCO and governments of various countries to take up their causes.

Over the last few decades, Indian artists have created an audience for Indian classical music on the global scenario, however, many have yet to get the desired recognition.

Ratish expressing concerns on absence of any federation of Indian classical musicians, said that he is in the process of creating an organization for musicians and that being in touch with international artists and musicians, helps in gathering knowledge about vital aspects.

He has been holding talks with officials of Copyrights Board of Government of India and also Indian Performing Rights Societies, on how to generate awareness on various legal rights of Indian classical musicians pertaining to their creations.

Ratish cites examples of unions and associations of performers at orchestras, operas, independent musicians, Jazz, Blues, Rap, violinists, singers, etc, in several countries and raises question, “why can’t we have one for Indian classical musicians so that they come on a common forum to chart rules and regulations with an aim to nurture this genre of music in the years to come keeping in mind the changing technology and the mindset of youth.

“Indian classical musicians are bestowed with one of the oldest and richest forms of musical arts in the world, we fail to realise this fact,” said Ratish adding, “We need to unite and form a common voice for the protection of our music and wellbeing of our musicians. We have to form a union and fight for our rights.”

Ratish added further that Indian musicians should feel the pride of our rich musical heritage and develop a professional and well-thought outlook like the musicians from West have maintained. “There is a need for internationalisation of Indian classical music.” said Ratish.

An International seminar will be organised jointly with International Federation of Musicians, World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and Government of India by end of this year in Mumbai to have deliberations on Asian music, with special focus on Indian classical music.

Ratish who seems to be positive that Indian classical music could offer full-time career opportunities to the youth in future, cautious that a well-planned strategy involving synchronised efforts & dedication from private Institutions and government officials is required.

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