Bombay Jayashri’s Neyam for special kids

By A Special Correspondent
Chennai: 18-06-2021 12:01AM
Last Updated: 19-06-2021 12:01AM

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CHENNAI, June 18: Teaching is a twice blessed activity. It blesses the receiver and the giver, too. If teaching involves special kids, then the whole exercise turns nobler. Carnatic musician Bombay Jayashri and her students are on a mission mode. For quite sometimes time now, they have been engaging with people on the autism spectrum through music. This engagement has culminated in the formation of Hitham Trust a few summers ago. It is an initiative that strives to make a difference in society using the medium of music.

 Jayashri and her students have begun sharing music on a regular and structured basis with people on the spectrum through Hitham Trust. This involved both group and individual sessions that were held at a dedicated premise in Chennai. The corona virus in its wake has, however, changed world topsy-turvy. Consequently, Jayashri & team have to reconfigure the whole exercise. “The pandemic helped me nurture my dream to share music across distance and borders. My students and I have always envisioned widening our reach beyond physical locations. The use of technology and the digital medium to communicate gave me a window to work beyond geographic boundaries,” said Jayashri.

Since June last year, Jayashri and her students have been conducting a programme titled“NEYAM” to share music with specially-abled children from Sri Lanka, Sydney, the U.K., Bahrain, parts of America, Canada and Singapore through an online platform. Presently, the sessions are held on a weekly basis for over 100 children, with a curriculum specially structured for this programme. The first few classes in all the batches are initiated by Jayashri and then continued by her students under her guidance. 

To mark the first year of this mutually joyous journey, a special online event has been planned on 26 June 26, 2021. At this event, children from all these locations would come together to sing along with Jayashri and her team.

As a musician, Jayashri believes in taking art beyond the precincts of the stage and performances. “Music heals, music spreads joy and music brings happiness,” she said.