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HindustanTimes Sat,20 Sep 2014

'Delhi is the cultural capital of the country'

Mahim Gupta, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, December 01, 2013
First Published: 16:48 IST(1/12/2013) | Last Updated: 16:53 IST(1/12/2013)
Abhay Sopori hails from a family of Santoor maestros dating back to over seven generations.

The 34-year-old santoor player, who is originally from Kashmir and now calls New Delhi home, tells us why it is so special for him to perform in the Capital. “There is just no place in India that is as diverse as Delhi. I would call it the cultural capital of the country. Unlike before, in recent years, young musicians have been given a chance to showcase their talent at various music concerts and Delhi has been at the forefront of this change,”he says.
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When asked what stirs him the most about his audience, the musician says, “Performing in front of young listeners is always a high. In my experience, I can say that in the last decade, a lot of young people have taken interest in instrumental music.”

Sopori, who’s composed music for a few films like Ziyarat and Mahatma, says, “These days, music in Bollywood is more about arranging than composing. I would like to change that. I have been a big admirer of some film musicians like Madan Mohan, Shankar Jaikishan and Naushad. But it is hard to name even one film musician from today’s time, who has a recall value. With my expertise in classical music, I believe I can create a difference in film music.”

Remembering the moment when he shared the stage with musician  Zubin Mehta in Kashmir earlier this year, he says, “He is such a humble man. To play alongside him was an honour. For him to give a young musician like me a chance lifted my spirits completely.”
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