By Kara-Leah Grant, author Forty Days of Yoga
It’s no secret I love kirtan. So I jumped at the chance to do a Skype video interview with Melbourne-based, Kiwi-born Kirtan artist Chakradhyan.
He’s a Satyananda yogi, and part of the growing Melbourne Kirtan scene. He also helped organise Melbourne Chant Festival in March of this year.
Anchored by international Kirtan artist Dave Stringer, this three-day festival attracted the most vibrant of the Australian Kirtan scene, proving that this style of yoga practice is on the rise.
Many well-known kirtanists begin as musicians and later develop into kirtan artists. It is thus a rare quality to discover a kirtanist who originates from a yoga tradition and then merges this love of yoga with music.
Classically trained in the yogic arts at the Bhiar School of Yoga in India, Chakradyhan’s experience draws upon a knowledge of the yogas of Mantra, Nada (energy vibration) and Bhakti (devotion) .
Blending these traditions with his own artistry he has developed a moving and unique kirtan style that weaves Satyananda Yoga kirtan with elements of folk rock. His raw and emotive kirtans engage group participation and allow an honest expression of joy, opening participants to access the rare and essential magic of kirtan, known as ‘bhava’.
Chakradhyan’s music weaves the Kirtan style unique to the Tantric Satyananda tradition with the spirit of folk rock. His style follows the movement of Shakti (energy) in the group, while his voice securely holds and entrances you into your bliss body.
“Kirtan is a very powerful way of accessing the depths of your being and tasting a drop of the pure self, but what is more beautiful is that you share that experience with the group through the energetic expression of your voice… and we all can feel that.” – Chakradyan
Chakradhyan is the founder of the chantyoga.com kirtan school, and also conceived the Chant and Chai Cartel and Mantra dance nights in Melbourne. He has over 15 years dedicated experience in yoga, mantra and meditation practice, including five years living and teaching in Satyananda yoga ashrams in Australia, India and New Zealand.
Best of all, he’s coming to Wellington next week, and leading a kirtan night at Powa Centre on Friday June 22nd, 7pm – 9pm. Cost is $15. You can find out more on Kalpataru Yoga’s website.
We chat for about fifteen minutes about the power of kirtan, and why it’s the practice for the 21st century, plus the growth of the scene in Australia. Enjoy!