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Kirtan with Francesca & Friends
July 15, 2018 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Join us for an evening of uplifting, soulful, and sacred music. Francesca and the Adeline Yoga “house band” will lead us in kirtan, a joyful practice of call-and-response chanting and devotional practice of Bhakti yoga.
Singing as a group connects us as a community and is an opportunity to open the heart, still the mind and experience joy in our connection to the Divine.
No musical experience necessary, just an open heart and mind.
Sunday, July 15 | 7:00-8:30 pm
Suggested Donation: $10 – $20 cash at the door
Francesca Nicosia, vocals and harmonium
Swetha Rao-Devigere, vocals
Doug Chermak, percussion
Kenny Shea Dinkin, guitar
About your musical leaders
Francesca Nicosia s a Certified Iyengar Yoga Teacher who has been chanting and leading kirtan for over a decade. She grew up in a musical family — her mother an opera singer and father an organist — and started playing piano and singing in choirs at a young age. She studied vocal performance in college and was first exposed to the sacred music of India during a semester abroad in Northern India. While living at Shoshoni Yoga Retreat in Colorado, chanting became an integral part of her daily sadhana. She was blessed to play with members of the ashram’s acclaimed kirtan band, Shiva’s Garden, and study classical Northern Indian singing with Megan Yalkut, a student of Ali Akbar Khan. Francesca regularly led kirtan at the Eldorado Mountain Yoga Ashram and the Denver Ashram before moving to the Bay Area in 2010. Chanting is her musical prayer and offering on the path of devotion, or Bhakti yoga. She is grateful to share her deep love for this devotional practice as a way to open the heart, still the mind and take refuge in our innermost experience of the Divine.
Swetha Rao-Devigere has been singing since she learned to speak and began performing for audiences at the age of three. Born and raised in Bangalore, India, she hails from a family of devout Vaishnavites who follow the path of Bhakti yoga and offer daily worship reciting Vedic hymns and chants. Her mother and extended family are practitioners and enthusiasts of classical Indian music and Bharatnatyam dance, which led Swetha to train in South-Indian classical (Carnatic) music for several years. Under the tutelage and patronage of her versatile British-Indian music teacher, she also studied Western music through her school years and performed as a lead vocalist in numerous musical theater productions, concerts, choirs and competitions. She continued her musical journey while in college, as a lead vocalist for a rock and roll band in Bangalore. Shortly after moving to the Bay Area, Swetha was delighted to find and become a part of the Adeline Yoga community where she is currently training in her second year of the Sadhana Studies program. She is thrilled to be re-united with music through her musically-gifted friends at Adeline. She enjoys performing vocals and harmonies at kirtans while she continues to explore all the wisdom, love and joy that Yoga has to offer.
Douglas Chermak has practiced Iyengar Yoga since 2001 and is a graduate of the inaugural Adeline Yoga Sadhana Studies program. He has studied Middle Eastern and Indian percussion since 2006 with teachers including Aharon Wheels Bolsta and Faisal Zedan. In addition to the Adeline yoga house band, he also plays percussion for kirtan in the Bay Area with Carolina Grace Lorenzo. Doug’s day job is as a plaintiff’s side environmental attorney with the Oakland-based firm Lozeau Drury LLP, where his practice emphasizes the protection of water quality.