Best of the Maldives: Music Competition – Kandima

Kandima - music competition

Sights, spaces and now sounds. Kandima’s artistry pervades its island with a fresh approach that engages its guests and fans. Its artist studio is run by an up-and-coming local artist to produce fresh works as well as to collaborate with the guests themselves. And the same spirit of creative engagement is being applied to the resort soundscape with the Maldives first ever music competition:

  • The first ever ‘Music Boss Wanted! Competition’ invites aspiring music writers, composers, singers and DJs to submit a video to Kandima Instagram or Facebook for a chance to win an amazing US$7000 cash prize and a full-paid holiday to the new island destination – how Kool is that?! To enter the competition, the applicants must upload a short video of themselves singing, playing a musical instrument or DJing to Instagram or Facebook using the unique hashtags #KandimaMusic and #KMusicBoss…Then the TOP 10 shortlisted applicants will be picked, and their videos will be uploaded to Kandima Maldives blog, followed by the K’Music Boss announcement on 21st August 2018. The winner will get a chance to create the Oh-So-Kool playlist with eight tarcks, which will be officially launched during the resort’s grand launch of its new Pool Party Series on 15th November 2018. The K’Music boss will also be setting the K’Mood with their playlist on the resort’s hop on/hop off buses, in all the studios or villas, and during the super Kool events both locally and globally – as a K’Music Boss should!”

The entries to date that have been selected and can be sampled here.  But, *NEWS FLASH*, Kandima has extended the deadline to mid-September!  So anyone needing a bit more production time (or just finding out about the competition now) can get their creative juices going and join the jamboree.

Best of the Maldives: Dancing– Sun Siyam Irufushi

Sun Siyam Irufushi - band

After a day of snorkelling, diving, exploring and soaking up the sun, Lori and I are usually ready to collapse under the stars after dinner. A number of resorts will feature entertainment in the evening and in many cases, the DJ or Boduberu is just too uninspiring to get us up onto our weary feet. And even if we can do, many of the resort bars and lounges have limited dance floor designed more for gentle swaying and bopping around the handbags. Lori and I both study ballroom and Latin dancing and we hadn’t found a resort where the music extended to such diverse genres and offered the room for really stretching out our heel leads and cha-cha-cha’s. Until we visited Sun Siyam Irufushi.

Their main bar, The Water’s Edge, boasts a 20m diameter dance floor with plenty of room to stretch out your dancing legs. Especially, since we had it to ourselves (well, until our ice breaking spurred several other couples to join in the romantic fun).

But the key to good dancing is good music and that’s what really got us going. The music led by Philippine duo “Intonation Band” (though I think they also go by the name “Desperado”). Not just a gigging band ushered in for the evening, but residents of Irufushi for 2 years. The duo consists of Henri and Rodelle (see photo above) who both play a range of instruments.

It’s not just the range of sounds, but the selection of songs. They will play virtually any request for you. They have an iPad app which allows them to download music and lyrics for an extensive library of favourites. We were able to get a cha-cha-cha, rumba, tango, waltz, even some jazz tunes (today is Jazz Day, by the way). The band was able to not just sight read the music very adeptly, but also sing along as well. The finale was Cat Stevens’ “How Can I Tell You” which is Lori’s “our song” (played at our wedding, etc.). Hard to imagine a more romantic finish to the evening dancing under the stars to your favourite song played live, in your favourite part of the world with your favourite person. Bravissimi!

 

Best of the Maldives: Piano Bar – Athuruga / Thudufushi

Athuruga - Thudufushi - piano bar

And the “Best of the Maldives” for “Piano Bar” goes to…<drum roll>… Athuruga and Thudufushi. “La La Land”, the story of a piano playing jazz musician Sebastian trying to bring Jazz to the fore had a bit of a problem at last night’s Oscars. No troubles, though, with Diamonds’ own Daniele (see above) bringing jazz and pop standards to your dinner playing at the overwater restaurants there. The live performance gave the music a more personal and intimate feel than piped in tracks, and the acoustic styles were soothing. You can enjoy his music over dinner or you are able to go to the restaurants for drinks.

See you in the Maldives.

Best of the Maldives: Blues – Anantara

Anantara - Coco blue singing

The land of an expansive turquoises and azures adds a different dimension to blues this month.

The rhythms of the swaying palms and the water lapping the shores immersed in the biggest expanse of vibrant blues. Maldives might just be the geographical incarnation of R&B.

Resorts attract a wide range of musical acts to entertain their guests over the post-prandial pina coladas. Traditionally dominated by bodu-beru acts, discotheques and local cover bands, the resorts have branched out into hip DJs, original acts and even DIY karaoke. This month Anantara features one of the most appropriate styles at its Dhigu, Veli and Naladhu resort cluster. American jazz blues singer Coco York is in residence performing regularly through January…

“Throughout her career Coco’s name has become synonymous with jazz, having shared the stage with artists such as Clark Terry, Lionel Ritchie, B.B. King and has performed for Bill Clinton, Queen Beatrix of The Netherlands, The North Sea Jazz Festival and the Jazz and Heritage Festival of New Orleans among others.”

Also, especially apropos for guests’ last night singing the blues of having the say goodbye to their time in paradise. But, let’s hope she’s not having to sing one of her stand-by pieces…”Stormy Monday Blues”.

Best of the Maldives: Private Karaoke – Sun Island

Sun Island private karaoke rooms 1

 

 

Tonight people around the world will all join hands at the stoke of midnight and belt out a chorus of ‘Auld Lang Syne’ for perhaps the world’s most pervasive moment of sing-along. Unfortunately, the vast majority of people don’t really know the lyrics beyond the first line and a few scattered words like “cup of kindness” and…well…that’s about it.

If knowing the words is a concern, then many resorts have karoke on hand But if embarrassment about know the words (or just singing in public) is a concern, then only , Sun Island has private Karaoke rooms specially designed for privte parties. 4 of them actually.

I once went to a karaoke private room in London for my friend David Hooper’s stag party. Rowdy music is always lots of fun, but it’s hard enough for the musically and stage-fright challenged in any event. Performing in front of strangers is a nightmare to some. The private room approach makes it more like having a sing-song among friends. It’s more intimate and party-like.

If you are interested in other New Years traditions, then check out NBC’s slideshow on them (slide #19 seems particularly apropos for Reethi Rah actually).

 

Sun Island private karaoke rooms 2

Best of the Maldives: Boduberu Competition – Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru

Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru Boduberu competition

The Olympics are always a chance to get acquainted with less familiar sports. The 2012 Games event that I saw was Synchronised Swimming which is not a programme on my record favourites at home. The Paralympics this week takes this introduction to even more varied competitions like ‘Goal Ball’.

The Maldives is pioneering some its own competitive spirit this month in the highly physical and talent demanding Boduberu Drumming sponsored by the Four Seasons. The Four Seasons are becoming a bit of champion for local competition having also promoted the Four Seasons Maldives Surfing Champions Trophy 2012 earlier in the year.

Minivan News reported on the event

“Beyond its significance for the holiday industry, a number of young people and cultural organisations, boduberu is serious business – not least for for the eight teams that on Saturday (September 1) night contested in this year’s Four Seasons Saqaafee Vaadha tournament on the island of Kamadhoo. Held barely five minutes by speedboat from one of Baa Atoll’s most high-profile resorts, the tournament saw teams representing the islands of Kendhoo, Kurendhoo, Holhudhoo, Kudafari, Dhivaafaru, Meedhoo, Madduvary and Rasmaadhoo competed for a grand prize of MVR100,000 to help fund development projects for their respective local communities. A further MVR 10,000 in prize money was also provided to be shared amongst the winning team’s members. The competition, organised in association with the Four Seasons resort group and local cultural organisations, was televised live across the nation with a team from the island of Rasmaadhoo being crowned the overall winners, based on the views of a four member panel of judges.”

Culture has been part of the Olympic since it started. The Opening and Closing Ceremonies are themselves major extravaganzas of music, dance, theatre, drama, sculpture, performance art and more. Also, since the Olympics last graced England in 1948, a ‘Cultural Olympiad’ has accompanied the festivities to further celebrate and promote the aesthetes with the athletes.

Events like the Boduberu competition aren’t that far removed from other ‘judged’ events (eg. Diving, Gymnastic, Syncronised Swimming, Dressage) that score equally as importantly for ‘Artistry’ as ‘Technical’ proficiency.