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ClassicsOnline Home » SAHAR, Radha: Joan of Arc
Radha Sahar is something of a musical chameleon. In her native New Zealand she is an acclaimed award-winning composer of positive educational music for young people. To her international audience, she is the driving force behind White Cloud's release Dreams of Flying by Astral Jazz, alongside jazz musicians Paul Dyne, Leigh Jackson and Damon Grant.
Now, in a completely new direction, she has created Joan of Arc, an inspiring album of classically based melodies, enhanced with soaring choral sections and digitally produced atmospheric backgrounds.
"Joan of Arc developed naturally as I began to write, I didn't have any preconceptions about how it would be," Radha says, "I worked primarily from being inspired by Joanof Arc's amazing life story.
"I loved classical music as a child, the imagery and the emotion that it holds; some of it moved me to tears. My parents encouraged me to learn piano when I was little, but the emphasis was on nurturing my love of music, not so much developing levels of technical skill. As a result, I've developed a self expression through writing music. Composition, recording and production are the main directions that my love of music has taken me.
"I started to write music when I was about eight, and naturally, I always dreamed that I might be able to make it my work. When my children were born, I started writing music for them, and my experience as a primary school teacher was very useful at that time."
Radha spent time as a young adult in Australia and Asia, and studied Indian classical singing. It was during this period of her life that she developed a deeper interest in therapeutic and religious music.
"I have always had strong feeling for the spiritual aspect of things, and the time I spent overseas was a period of spiritual growth for me. It made me aware of my own creative potential, and how I could develop it through my music."
She returned to New Zealand in the mid-eighties and started UCA Recordings with fellow White Cloud artist David Clark. They established their studio in Titahi Bay, a small coastal town just north of the capital city, Wellington.
"I have always wanted to record the music that I wrote for my own personal expression. Now my releases on White Cloud are giving me that freedom. This music is like a deep expression for me, it's very satisfying and fulfilling to be able to write and perform it."
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SAHAR, Radha: Joan of Arc