This website is not compatible with Your Browser. Either update or use another.

Trials and tribulations of a struggling Artist

226 Views
Trials and tribulations of a struggling Artist

Today I would like to share a bit about my experience as a {highly} struggling musician in the capital. I took the firm decision to make the move from Mumbai to Delhi almost two years ago. Reason being, that the city of dreams had me in a rut (amongst other things). It was time to break away from hollow habits and overpriced habitable holes. It was instinctive, but this is what I wanted. My picture of this being something very different to what I am about to narrate. After all, it is said that if you really want something the universe will conspire and pave a way to make it happen. So there I was two weeks post decision making- packed, wrapped and ready to escort my kitten Penny on a flight across the subcontinent. Disembarking in Delhi was surreal. Not really knowing what to expect, I gradually developed a schedule; most important focus being on music-oriented activities. Firstly, enrolling at the Delhi School of Music. This is the school i started learning the flute from when I first moved to India in 1999, so I was glad to be back here. Once done, I already started feeling more positive. Second on the agenda was creating a social life. No friends, no network equalled no gigs nor exposure in my book. Three weeks down and I was out and about in a city that had so much to offer, I couldn't understand why I didn't make the move earlier. When it came down to the music life- well I got my first gig within the first month of being in Delhi. It was for a school production. All I had to do was play the flute. That's all. Rehearsals kept me on my toes- man do kids have a crazy amount of energy! Also the drive from Vasant Kunj to Karol Bagh every day for that duration was quite tiring. Yet, I chanced on playing originally composed pieces by one classical guitarist whom I worked with on another play post the above mentioned and other projects. But most of all, this was my first paid gig. I thought the word would spread and I'd be booked every week. How many concert flautist does one really come across, who sing and play guitar as well (no not at the same time). Little did I know that it would take me almost eight months hence, to get booked for another two events. The venues were fab, the guitarists even better, the crowd enthusiastic. I feel like I can say this on behalf of all artists out there that when you are standing on a stage, knowing that you have the attention of so many, the feeling is beyond uplifting. The moment I step down from a stage, a sense of achievement and humility flourish inside me.I am no longer who i thought I am in the present, but an amalgamation of cliched unicorn princess and grinning Arni. Once home and nights post event day, I encounter those who came to see me at my Live gig and all have one thing in common- the ultimate question; why are you not getting paid for your performances?! Alas! This question too, has me befuddled. I did it for a friend. I did it for myself. I did it to be on stage, to feel that feeling, the sensational on stage being that I morph in and out of. For the love of music, for the experience. So many hours of labour and money has been funnelled into being 'there' and my reward, is appreciation (mostly anyway). But I ask you, is this really the reason why so many of us make the ultimate sacrifice?