Baithak Foundation is presently working on 4 major projects.
A. Baithak School Music Program:
Baithak engages with two schools in Pune, with the objective of creating awareness about Indian Classical Music and nurturing the talent. The program focuses on music appreciation and learning the basics of Indian Classical Music. Baithak attempts to make music learning relevant to students at young age. Currently we are engaging in a feedback process with all the stakeholders of the program to refine our model in the next year.
1. Babu Jagjeevanram School, Yerawada, Pune
Babu Jagjeevanram School is a municipal school which is being run by iTeach Foundation through the arrangement of PPP (public-private partnership). Baithak Foundation has appointed a fellow as a music teacher at this school. Like every other subject, music is also a regular subject that is being taught to every class in the school twice every week.
Thanks to the enthusiastic support from the school, a separate music room is being set up, which over the period will evolve into a place where students could learn, practice music, listen to records, watch documentaries and read books related to Indian Classical Music.
2. Blind Girls’ School, Dahanukar Colony, Pune
Blind Girls’ School is well known for nurturing the talent of blind girls along with normal schooling and the girls from this school have won multiple competitions. Baithak Foundation has appointed a music fellow in this school who works with 20 students who are appearing for the Gandharva Sangeet Mahavidyalaya exams. As the school has one full time music teacher, the Baithak fellow teaches the selected 20 students the advanced and subtle aspects which will eventually help to these students in case they wish to make music their profession.
B. Baithak Illustrated Books
The first thing that we realized after starting our work with kids was lack of good quality literature, textbook and other teaching aids that are required to teach the subject. We also realized that no current available text is engaging appropriate for young readers. To fill out this gap, Baithak Foundation has taken on its shoulders the huge but much required task of developing content and teaching aids required to teach Indian Classical Music in schools. The first step is a set of illustrated books on various musicians from India.
C. Baithak School Concerts
This is an initiative currently functional in 2 of our partner schools where Baithak organizes a Indian Classical Music concert for the students, teachers and parents. The objective here is to allow students to gain an experience of a live performance. Our students from these public schools have never attended a concert before and it is also highly unlikely that they will be able to do so in future and hence we are bringing concerts to places approachable to them. The school concerts feature young artists who are classical vocalists, instrumentalists, dhrupad practitioners, classical dancers etc. After the concert the artist engages in a questions and answer session with the students. The artist is also expected to share a write-up about their art form and their personal journey of learning the art.
D. Musical Musings:
Classical Music has remained confined to large concert halls and decorated open grounds where hundreds gather to witness the magic. However, magic happens where the artist is relaxed in a homely environment and surrounded by an intimate gathering. Through musical musings, an hour long musical performance we take Classical Music to unconventional venues thereby reaching newer and young audience. We present music in cafes, homes, backyards where participants engage with the artist and experience the process of co-creation of music. Currently we have performed on themes like love and devotion through classical compositions, Indian Classical Music in Natya Sangeet, saint literature by Sant Dyaneshwar, Tukaram, Kabir, women saints of India and many more.
A musical Musing performance, as the name suggests is music along with meaningful discussions around Indian Classical Music, poetry and philosophy. Any proceeds from such performance is utilised to support the various other activities of Baithak.