Improvisations on two pianos

During a public concert in August 1990 in Manhattan, spiritual teacher and musician Sri Chinmoy gave a special piano performance. He first played on one piano, then switched to the second one, while the electronically recorded first performance was playing simultaneously! Camera & Edit: Kedar Misani, kedarvideo.

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Sri Chinmoy’s 21st Piano Anniversary

On February 18th, 2008 we can celebrate the 21st Anniversary of Sri Chinmoy’s spontaneous improvisational piano playing. At the end of each of his many concerts Sri Chinmoy often made the finale with a powerful piano or organ piece. Most of the time, the piano as well as other musical instruments help him to enter into a trance that connected him with his inner sounds. The results of his playing were most of the time extremely powerful and impressive. In one of his writings Sri Chinmoy says, “A piano has many keys. Each key has its distinct note or sound, a distinct individuality and personality. When the keys are played together, they don’t lose their individuality and personality but they act as a unit and create something really special. In an orchestra, so many instruments are being played, and each instrument represents or embodies a kind of individuality and personality. But when they are played together, they create such a divine atmosphere; they bring down Heaven on earth. If you take them separately, each one will have its own individuality, but it will not be able to achieve that Kingdom of Heaven on earth. So we expand and we strengthen ourselves when we mix together.”

Sri Chinmoy plays 75 pianos in a row

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On August 22, 2005 I could witness a special performance on the “Aspiration- Ground” in Queens, New York. Celebrating his 74th Birthday Sri Chinmoy played on 74 pianos in a row. The variety of pianos was ranging from simple to expensive concert pianos, from all possible brands and in various shapes and colours. Some students of him who professionally work with pianos, hired a couple of trucks to bring all the instruments to the former tennis court, where the maestro made his record performance. He first meditated and then started with piano no. 1. On each instruments he tried to bring out its soul by doing spontaneous improvisations or performing his own melodies. More than a thousand of his disciples attended this special concert and I had the chance to be very close to the action, taking videos of the whole event. We photographers and videographers tried to be very quiet not to disturb the master’s meditative play. As with his art exhibitions, the totality of the music pieces created a unique meadow of notes, never heard before. For those of you who are inspired by the 74 piano concert a DVD is available. You can also watch an online version here.

Sri Chinmoy’s largest Concert in Japan

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In 1992 I could witness Sri Chinmoy’s largest concert in Japan, which took place in the famous Nippon Budokan Hall in Tokyo. When there was a concert of Sri Chinmoy I usually went very early to the concert place because I wanted to have time to prepare my video equipment and find a nice angle to view the concert. When I came the vicinity of the hall I recognized that masses of people were aproaching the hall in the early afternoon. So, I thought there might be football much or something big happening before. But then I realized that these were all seekers coming for the big meditation concert in the evening, that was announced with many posters. It was amazing to see how patiently the masses of people waited in a one proper line, reading a paper or a book – all waiting to get a free ticket at the entrance. Finally 10’000 people came and the hall was packed when Sri Chinmoy appeared on the huge stage, decorated with simple structured panels. For the piano performance the organizer had prepared a laser show which perfectly fit the modern tunes of the master’s improvisations. At the end Sri Chinmoy invited all his Japanese students to perform a song on stage which he especially composed for Japan. The Japanese concert was for certainly a highlight of the 777 concerts he gave over his lifespan worldwide.