Quick Interview: Ahmed Kaysher

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One of the country’s leading Indian classical musicians, he regularly performs in Leeds and this month will be bringing his unique style to Chapel Allerton, Leeds. Interview by Neil Hudson

What’s your earliest memory?

I normally can’t go to sleep until at least two or three o’clock in the morning, regardless of how early I have to wake up. The more the night intensifies, the more concentration I can focus on listening to music, mainly classical, or reading serious stuff. I was listening to a beautiful Maand (a heart perforating Raaga, visceral musical composition) by one of the finest Indian classical vocalists, Chandra Chakraborty, while reciting Baudelaire’s remarkable poem The Balcony. In one point I started realising the verses of poetry are truly replacing the emotions of music I was listening to. I read and write poetry to shoot my heart as many ways possible but then, I listen classical music for remedy, to dry those wounds up. It’s almost like a cycle.

If you could pass a new law, what would it be and why?

I would pass a law to stop the practices of lightening the serious art forms under the name of ‘fusion’. Fusion is obvious to sustain and connect more audience but when you compromise purity of art, it become so cheap. Especially when it comes to classical music, a supreme form of art, which provokes a philosophical journey.

What would be your X Factor audition song?

I would direct a musical combination and listen to music but if I go for an audition I would probably sing a spiritually connecting composition by Tagore, Nobel laureate Bengali poet, call ed ‘Ei Porobashe Ke Robe?’

What’s your biggest vice?

I easily get tempted by anything I count as beauty.

When were you happiest?

The day after the event by Saudha in the Purcell Room, Queen Elizabeth Hall, London when I received about 223 emails from literally enthralled audiences.

If your house was burning down and you could rescue three THINGS, what would they be?

My laptop, my phone and something to wear in the cold.

What would your super power be and why?

I always wanted to be God, I found all other powers are clerical. If I was God, not even a single leaf of a tree would die in the world. The world be more musical and far more beautiful than what it is now.

What would you most like to achieve in life and why?

I would like to come up with revolutionary idea like developing Indian classical music to more audiences. But again, I always like to weave poetry and celluloid; I make short films, too.

World Poetry and Indian Classical Music Festival at Seven Arts, Chapel Apperton on Saturday October 10, from 6pm-9pm. Tickets cost £10: www.eventbrite.co.uk