Gurupriya Atreya

Vedanth Bharadwaj


September 22nd 2023.

Sing A Lullaby

Sleep Songs Across Cultures

Gurupriya Atreya and Vedanth Bharadwaj conducted a year-long online workshop series called “Sing A Lullaby” at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic. The duo collected, researched and shared 52 lullabies in 38 languages from across India and the world. Over the year, the community of lullaby-ers grew to encourage over 450 people from different parts of the globe to come together into this oasis of warmth and comfort during stressful times, especially when even sleep became elusive.

Lullabies are believed to be the oldest genre in music known to us. The soothing songs carry with it centuries of quiet love that descends at the end of a long day, as mothers, fathers and caregivers sing to their children, while themselves slipping into its relaxing breath. And contained within a lullaby’s simple lyrics and melodies, are emotions, stories, age-old wisdom and beautiful imageries from nature. Lullabies from Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka, Andhra, Orissa, Madhya Pradesh, Bengal, Nepal, Himachal Pradesh, Kashmir, Punjab, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Sri Lanka, Mali, Tonga, Trinidad, Spain, Lithuania, Albania and from several other parts of the world showed us
one thing – that love, language and music truly transcend all boundaries. Even a Zoom call window.

Gurupriya and Vedanth also invited guest artists, often speaking the lullaby’s native tongue, to help participants truly appreciate the nuance inherent in words, and the layers inherent in its music. Artists such as Sikkil C Gurucharan, Radhika Sood Nayak, The Ghosts, Ananth Menon, Shruthi Veena Vishwanath, Caitlin & Pierre Flasse, Cheryl Teh, Shilpa Mudbi, Bindhumalini Narayanaswamy, MD Pallavi eagerly joined them in this journey. The workshop series also featured folk musicians such as Mir Basu Khan and Mir Abdul Jabbar from Rajasthan, and helped raise resources for their basic needs through the community of lullaby-ers during the financially debilitating period of the global lockdown.

Perhaps one of their most cherished collaborations was with children in the autism- spectrum from Chennai’s V-Excel Educational Trust, who wrote an original lullaby for them, that was then set to tune by Gurupriya and Vedanth and shared with the community
of lullaby-ers. The children also reminded Gurupriya and Vedanth to keep their promise of producing and releasing all the lullabies into the world. The duo has released five so far and are currently working on the production of the rest of the album.

Amna Bibi – in collaboration with Khatija Rahman

kaNNe en kaNmaNiye

Niza Niza Re

Silent Night – Stille Nacht

Cradle Song.- Sleep Baby Sleep

Gurupriya and Vedanth have started taking these lullabies to a larger cross-section of people through live concerts and workshops. After their successful start in Bengaluru, they will be performing and teaching in the cities of Hyderabad, Chennai, Kochi and Mumbai,
with a planned tour in Europe as well. They hope to take it to spaces where it can be used as a tool to build community, cultivate harmony and embrace healing.