Petr Stef Kišur, clayoven (2018), Music Ashram at Gabricz Festival, Poland
As part of their exhibition Omnibus, Honey-Suckle Company invite Dr Kamalroop Singh and The Blue Lions band to lead an afternoon of Indian devotional music in the exhibition space.
Kamalroop Singh and The Blue Lions belong to the Sikh lineage of the Akali Nihang Singhs, who perform kirtan, a call-and-response form of musical chanting. Featuring traditional instruments such as the Punjabi taus and the tabla drum, and the recitation of mantras in specific ragas, the group’s music is intended to have a profound effect on the mind and body, restoring energy and balance. Music is at the core of the teachings of Guru Nanak, the founder of Sikhism, who, in the 15th century, utilised raga – the popular music of the day – as a tool of communication, overlaid with sung poetry known as Gurbani.
In recent years, Kamalroop Singh has collaborated with members of Honey-Suckle Company, as their collective work and individual practices have channelled spiritual understandings of healing, especially those connected to music and sound. The Blue Lions performance within Omnibus further extends Honey-Suckle Company’s ideas of their practice as a collective holistic methodology, with the exhibition activated as a space of deep listening and meditation.
Kamalroop Singh has a PhD in Sikh Martial Scripture from Birmingham University, and has studied with traditional orders and from original manuscripts in India. He is a linguist who has worked on projects preserving the Punjabi language, and has participated in numerous Panjabi/Sikh Studies programs and conferences. He is the co-author of The Granth of Guru Gobind Singh: Essays, Lectures and Translations (Oxford University Press, 2015), among other academic papers and publications.