In a first for Australia, and with a vision to connect Australians and Indians through music, Sydney’s Nagaraj brothers have launched the Australian Indian Orchestra (AIO) – Australia’s first and only Symphony Orchestra dedicated to performing Indian music.
The AIO is bringing Australian and Indian musicians, audiences, and hearts together through the fusion of Indian music with Australian orchestras. Encapsulating this connection, the AIO’s inaugural concert “Sydney to Mumbai: A Symphonic Journey to Incredible India” will be held at the iconic Verbrugghen Hall in the Sydney Conservatorium of Music on Sunday 13 August at 5:00pm.
The highly anticipated concert will feature some of the most popular Bollywood songs transformed by the grandeur of a majestic 60-piece Australian Symphony Orchestra. The Symphony Orchestra will comprise of local Sydney musicians and rising talents from the Sydney Conservatorium of Music and Sydney Youth Orchestras and led by the Australian-Indian brothers: Sagar and Suraj Nagaraj. In what promises to be an evening to remember, the audiences will experience the fusion of Indian music with Australian orchestras.
Formed in 2023, the AIO brings Australian and Indian musicians together to create a truly unique musical experience. Celebrating the diversity and versatility of the cultural fabric of music in Australia, the AIO is set to be a cultural gem and inspiration for future generations of musicians in Australia and around the world.
Sagar, 26, is an accomplished violinist who has performed with the Australian World Orchestra.
“This will be the biggest collaboration between Australian and Indian musicians and a landmark event for the cultural fabric of music here in Australia” said Sagar who is also Concertmaster for the Australian Indian Orchestra.
Star Talent and Orchestra Conductor, Suraj Nagaraj, 20, has single-handedly arranged the program of Bollywood songs for the entire Symphony Orchestra. Suraj is currently also the Concertmaster of the prestigious Sydney Youth Orchestra, where he has led concerts with the London Symphony Orchestra and the Sydney Philharmonia Choirs at the iconic Sydney Opera House.
“Writing the music scores for each of the Bollywood songs that will be performed for an Australian orchestra has been the biggest challenge and highlight for me in preparing for this unique concert. Bringing the two cultures together through music has been a dream for me and I can’t wait to see it all unfold on stage on 13 August,” said Suraj, Artistic Director & Conductor, Australian Indian Orchestra.
Renowned Sydney-based vocalists Avijit Sarkar, Ruhani Dhillon, Vikas Kolar, and Rucha Lange will bring the stage alive with in-demand Indian instrumentalists including Abhijit Dan on tabla, R. Nagraj on sitar, Behzad Ansari on santour, Mayank Singh and Vijendra on guitar and Satyajeet Roy on keyboard and piano.
Combining these leading Australian and Indian musicians on stage will create an unforgettable musical experience for those in attendance. The concert will feature some of the most memorable songs from celebrated Bollywood movies and artists across the decades including Mohammed Rafi, Kishore Kumar, Lata Mangeshkar, Hariharan, Shankar Mahadevan, Sonu Nigam, Shreya Ghoshal, Arijit Singh and more. “Sydney to Mumbai” is set to be the Spectacle of the Year.