Fri Mar 13: “Master Musicians of Kolkata” QSMA Launch

The main event of 2020 for Brisbane’s Indian classical music lovers: Two of the finest instrumentalists in India, Pt Sugato Nag (sitar) and Pt Abhijit Banerjee (tabla), Master Musicians of Kolkata, present their art at Queensland Multicultural Centre.

This is the launch concert for Queensland Sangeet Mela Association (QSMA), dedicated to fostering high quality Indian classical music in Queensland, from the team that brought you Sangeet Mela, Australia’s premiere Indian classical event from 2014-2019.

Purchase annual membership of QSMA with your pre-booked concert ticket and save $5.

Contact: Shen 0415106428,

FB Event page:

TABLA AND SITAR WORKSHOPS ON SAT 14 MAR: Contact Shen for details.


Pt Sugato Nag (sitar)

Born in an elite, educated and highly cultured family of Bengal, Sugato Nag is fast emerging as one of the finest sitar virtuosi of the present generation. In today’s fast-changing world of Indian classical music, Sugato represents a dwindling populace of learned musicians, having had systematic taleem from some of the most respected purists of this art.

Playing in the style of the Etawah and Senia-Shahjahanpore gharanas, Sugato has expertly blended the intricacies of the Sitar baj of the Etawah gharana and the Rabab-based Sarod baj of the Senia Shahjahanpore gharana. A very melodious and sensitive player, Sugato’s imaginative synthesis of the gayaki style and intricate bolwork patterns of the Sarod through skillful improvisations have resulted in a style which is unique.

Pt Abhijit Banerjee (tabla)

Considered among the top class of tabla players from India, Abhijit Banerjee is one of the most sought after creative artists in the realm of Indian classical music. Abhijit has crafted a unique style and creative approach which has brought him accolades and awards throughout the world. He is known for his sensitivity, skill and deep sense of musicality. Apart from his contributions to Indian music he has delved into a diverse variety of world music crossover as both a performer and composer.

Recognizing his talent and natural inclination towards music his father steered him to tabla at the age of four. Abhijit also studied vocal music and violin later in his life in making a complete musician out of him. He is considered as one of the main disciples of the illustrious guru, the late Pt. Gyan Prakash Ghosh.

Abhijit has accompaniment on tabla nearly all of the top ranking stars of Hindustani classical music including Pt.Ravi Shankar, Late Pt.Nikhil Banerjee, Begum Parweena Sultana, Pt.Jasraj, Pt. Shiv Kumar Sharma, Dr.Balamurali Krishnan to name a few. As a tabla soloist he has also left his distinct mark through numerous performances and publications in India & abroad.  

Sangeet Mela 2019 report

Many thanks to all those who were part of a beautiful day of Indian classical music and dance: the artists, volunteers, sponsors, and thanks most of all the audience. It was a fine selection of performances. Thanks also to Brian Sullivan for these photos. See our Facebook album for more.

Saee Sane (Rising Star Award – Kathak dance) opened the festival with accompaniment by Sri Shen Flindell (tabla), Dr Helena Joshi (padhant), Sri Sangeet Mishra (sarangi), and Dr Mansey Kinarivala (vocal).
Saee Sane (Rising Star Award – Kathak dance) with Sangeet Mishra (sarangi) in the background.
Saee Sane performed rhythmic pieces in teentaal followed by a short sargam.
Saee Sane (Rising Star Award – Kathak dance)
Mansey Kinarivala opened the festival with a short vocal solo and sang the sargam for Saee’s final piece.
Dr Helena Joshi (Guru of Saee Sane, providing padhant – spoken bols)
Aishwarya Jangam (Rising Star Award – Bharatanatyam) gave an enchanting performance.
Aishwarya Jangam (Rising Star Award – Bharatanatyam)
Siddharth Adityan (Rising Star Award – mridangam) performed creditably in 11 beats.
Siddharth Adityan (Rising Star Award – mridangam) with taalam by
Dr. Prabha Selvanathan.
Rising Star Award winners with Shen Flindell (festival director), Sairam Kannaian (platinum sponsor Yoga King), Umesh Chandra (media sponsor Brisbane Indian Times)
Darshil Shah (bansuri) performed Raga Charukeshi in matta taal (9 beats) and teentaal, followed by a beautiful ghazal in rupak.
Darshil Shah (bansuri) with Kush Sami (tabla) and Molly (tanpura)
Saikat Bhattacharya (sitar) in his final Brisbane performance before moving to Melbourne, presented Raga Pilu in rupak, ektaal and teentaal.
Shen Flindell (tabla) accompanying Saikat Bhattacharya
Saikat and Shen deep in music
Sriranjani Chandramouli (Bharatanatyam)
Sriranjani Chandramouli (Bharatanatyam)
Sangeet Mishra (sarangi) performed with accompaniment by Shen Flindell (tabla)
Sangeet Mishra demonstrating the vocal aspect of his music
Sangeet and Shen enjoying successful performance
Tahir Faridi Sufi Qawwali Ensemble
Tahir Qawwal
Farhan Shah of Tahir Faridi Sufi Qawwali Ensemble
Tahir Qawwal and Bhairavi Devi
Chetan Ramlu (Qawwali tabla)
Farhan Shah (Qawwali)
Charulatha Mani (Carnatic vocal) took us on a deep journey of sruthi with Raga Thodi, with accompaniment by Kranthi Kiran Mudigonda (violin) and Sridhar Chari (mridangam)
Charulatha Mani (Carnatic vocal) with Kranthi Kiran Mudigonda (violin) and Sridhar Chari (mridangam)
Sridhar Chari (mridangam) accompanying Charulatha Mani (Carnatic vocal)
MC Bindu Rajendren
MC Kush Sami
Cast and crew of Sangeet Mela 2019 (those who could stay until the end)

Festival director Shen Flindell said “Events such as Sangeet Mela are invaluable in cultivating Indian classical music, both as the ideal vehicle for artists to perform for a quality audience at a quality venue, and as an attractive package to attract new audiences to this wonderful culture. Unfortunately I am unable to continue to drive this event and will be withdrawing from organising large events to focus on my own practice and students. I will be very happy to support and provide continuity for any individual or organisation who would take over the management of Sangeet Mela.”

Menu for Sangeet Mela 2019

The amazing chefs of Brisbanecaters are back at Sangeet Mela 2019 to treat us with the delicious meals and snacks along with very efficient service we enjoyed so much at the last Sangeet Mela.

Vegetarian dinners will be available by pre-order only via our ticket website. Snacks and drinks will be available for purchase on the day.

MENU (V = Vegan, GF = Gluten Free – all vegetarian)

High Tea: 2 pm to 6 pm

Snacks pack: $5
Medu vada and Gopi Manchurian with Coconut chutney (V)
Masala tea or Tea/Coffee

Water $1
Masala Tea $2
Coke/Diet Coke $2
Self service Tea/Coffee $1

Dinner Buffet 6.30 pm $10 – PRE-ORDERED ONLY

  • Paneer Tikka Masala: Paneer cooked in rich tomato sauce and tossed with cubes of onions, assorted bell peppers and finished with Chef’s special masala. (V)
  • Mixed Veg Curry: Mix vegetable cooked in traditional Indian sauce made with onions, tomatoes, and flavored with an array of finely ground herbs and spices. (V/GF)
  • Veg Pulao: Basmati rice stir fried together with mix veg and mild oriental spices (V/GF)
  • Dessert: Gulab Jamun

Announcing Sangeet Mela 2019

The team behind Australia’s premiere Indian classical festival are excited to announce that planning for Sangeet Mela 2019 is well under way. The event will be held on Saturday 30th March and will feature Carnatic vocal by Smt Charulatha Mani, Qawwali ensemble led by Tahir Qawwal, sarangi solo by Sri Sangeet Mishra, Bharatanatyam dance by Smt Sriranjani Chandramouli with live ensemble, and sitar solo by Sri Saikat Bhattacharya.

We are calling on community leaders to support this important cultural event, and for aspiring young Indian classical artists to apply for our Sangeet Mela Rising Star Awards.

As part of Sangeet Mela’s mission to foster Indian classical culture in Brisbane, several young artists under the age of 26 will be given the opportunity to perform at the festival and will receive a “Sangeet Mela Rising Star Award”. Each year one or two awards may be given in each of four categories (Vocal, Instrumental, Percussion and Dance), each in the two broad genres of Hindustani and Carnatic Sangeet. Many past award recipients identify these awards as a pivotal moment in their development as classical artists. Past winners include Dr Helena Joshi (Kathak dance), Sri Arthavan Selvanathan (mridangam), Ku Roshni Sriram (Carnatic vocal), and Ku Mathuja Bavan (both Bharatanatyam and violin).

We invite and request all dance and music gurus, members of the community and connoisseurs of music to circulate this information among your students or any young enthusiastic performers to apply for these awards.

Full details of the conditions of application are available on available on the Sangeet Mela Website at:
Applications close Friday 1st February, 2019. Winners will be informed by Friday 15th February, 2019.

I’m sure all community leaders understand the importance of cultivating “Indian Classical Music” (which includes the music of Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka). We request the support of community groups and businesses in any or all of the following ways:

  • Please keep Saturday 30th March free in your calendar, and don’t organise any competing event.
  • Forward information about Sangeet Mela 2019 to your association or school membership and other networks.
  • Purchase tickets in bulk at a discount rate for your members.
  • Become a sponsor of Sangeet Mela 2019.

Please get in touch with me via email on or phone 0415106428 to discuss any of these ways to support the development of Indian classical music in Brisbane.

Kind Regards

Shen Flindell
Festival Director
Sangeet Mela 2019

Sangeet Mela 2017 official videos

The Youtube playlist for all the official performance videos from Sangeet Mela 2017… If you prefer to watch and share on Facebook, please visit our Facebook page.

Sangeet Mela 2017 official report

Saturday 2nd September 2017 saw the Indian classical music lovers of Brisbane and around Australia gathering at Queensland Multicultural Centre for Sangeet Mela 2017, the 4th edition of this wonderful celebration of Indian classical music and dance.

The first session opened with a Kathak dance performance by Rising Star Award winner Ku Sheena Rinky Bala, a senior disciple of Brisbane’s leading Kathak dance guru Smt Namita Debroy. Rinky was accompanied by a live ensemble featuring Sri Shen Flindell (tabla), Smt Namita Debroy (padhant), Smt Usha Chivukula (vocal), Sri Joseph Nand (harmonium), and Sri Darshil Shah (bansuri).  (VIDEO)

Ku Sheena Rinky Bala (Kathak dance) with live ensemble

The second Rising Star Award winner performance for 2017 was Carnatic vocal by Ku Madhuvanthi Muralidharan, with accompaniment by Sri Aswin Narayanan (violin) and Sri Balaram Ramagiri (mridangam).  (VIDEO)

We are very proud of our Rising Star Award winners and our tradition of recognising young talent in these challenging Indian classical arts. We hope that the experience of performing at Sangeet Mela encourages them to continue their studies and practice, and look forward to many more great performances as these young artists mature.

Platinum sponsor Sri Sairam Kannaian of Yoga King presents the Rising Star Awards to Ku Madhu Murali (Carnatic vocal) and Ku Sheena Rinky Bala (Kathak dance), with Sangeet Premi Club secretary Smt Usha Chivukula and Sangeet Mela festival director Sri Shen Flindell.

The afternoon session concluded with a tabla solo recital by Sri Simranjit Singh, presenting compositions of the Punjab Gharana, with accompaniment by Sri Joseph Nand (harmonium) and Sri Darshil Shah (bansuri).  (VIDEO)

After a break for snacks, stretching legs and chatting with fellow music lovers, the audience reconvened for the sunset session, commencing with a beautiful bansuri recital with a leading Indian classical artist from Japan, Sri Taro Terahara, with accompaniment by Sri Maharshi Raval (tabla – Sydney) and Taro-ji’s wife Smt Yuriko Terahara (tanpura).  (VIDEO)

Brisbane-based Bharatanatyam star performer and guru, Smt Padmalakshmi Sriram, delighted the audience with her dance presentation along with her daughter Ku Shivani Sriram.  (VIDEO)

The sunset session concluded with a sarod recital by Sri Rahul Bhattacharya (Melbourne) with accompaniment by Sri Simranjit Singh (tabla).  (VIDEO)

The dinner break was the smoothest ever with everyone getting their fill of a delicious buffet meal very quickly. Many congratulations to Murali Ramakrishnan and his team for this improvement in the Sangeet Mela experience.

The late session opened with our international star of Hindustani vocal, Smt Sunita Tikare (Mumbai), with accompaniment by Sri Maharshi Raval (tabla – Sydney) and Sri Joseph Nand (harmonium). Sunita is a senior disciple of Late Vidushi Kishori Amonkar and the audience were entranced by her renditions of compositions made famous by her esteemed guru-ji.  (VIDEO)

At last the grand finale arrived, Carnatic Saraswathi veena by Smt Nirmala Rajasekar (Chennai/USA), with accompaniment by Sri Murugaboopathi (mridangam) and Sri Ganesh Prasad (violin). The virtuosity and musicality of all three artists was just brilliant.  (VIDEO)

After another epic journey through the various styles of Indian classical music and dance, we eagerly await the next instalment of Sangeet Mela. The organisers would like to extend our deepest gratitude to all our supporters: the sponsors, audience, volunteers, performers and organising committee members.

Cast and crew of Sangeet Mela 2017

Photos by Randhawa Media and Brian Sullivan (click on links for the full photo albums by each photographer).

Sangeet Mela 2017 was supported by  platinum sponsor Yoga King, the Lord Mayor’s Suburban Initiative Fund via The Gabba Ward, silver sponsors Sahaja Yoga MeditationHomeopathy for Health (Rukmani Paliwal), and Sitar Restaurant, and exclusive media sponsors Brisbane Indian Times and Australian Indian Radio. It was organised by EthnoSuperLounge in conjunction with Sangeet Premi Club.

Book your meal for Sangeet Mela 2017

As part of our commitment to provide you with memorable experience at Sangeet Mela 2017, we have organised snacks from 2pm to 6pm plus a buffet dinner from 6:30pm. You can purchase meals for $12 on the day or pre-book for $10. Please see the menu below.

High Tea 2.00 pm to 6 pm – $4.00

Onion Pakora (Slice onion and potato marinated in gram flour, deep fried round ball)

Gobi Manchurian (Cauliflower fritters in dry sauce)



Dinner Buffet 6.30 pm – pre-booked $10.00, on day $12.00


Paneer Tikka Masala (Paneer cooked in rich tomato sauce and tossed with cubes of onions, assorted bell peppers and finished with Chef’s special masala)

Mixed Veg Curry (Mix vegetable cooked in traditional Indian sauce made with onions, tomatoes, and flavored with an array of finely ground herbs and spices)

Veg Pulao (Basmati rice stir fried together with mix veg and mild oriental spices)

Dessert: Pineapple Noodle Pudding

Non Veg

Chicken Tikka Masala (Char grilled Chicken cooked in rich tomato sauce and tossed with cubes of onions, assorted bell peppers and finished with Chef’s special masala)

Mixed Veg Curry (Mix vegetable cooked in traditional Indian sauce made with onions, tomatoes, and flavored with an array of finely ground herbs and spices)

Veg Pulao (Basmati rice stir fried together with mix veg and mild oriental spices)

Dessert: Pineapple Noodle Pudding