Do you whistle your favourite songs in the bathroom? You can do it on stage too. “Whistling can be an art just like singing. You can even give concerts,” says Mohan Kumar of the Indian Whistlers’ Association in Bengaluru.
Mohan Kumar, who earlier worked with ITI and took voluntary retirement, is actively associated with the Mumbai-based association, founded by Rigveda Deshpandey in 2004. “I come from a family of musicians. Musical whistling is a popular art in foreign countries. We want to promote and popularise it here,” he says.
His concerts feature mainly film songs and semi-classical songs. The Indian Whistlers’ Association describes itself as the first truly Indian whistling fraternity.
It has presented about 300 shows all over India. Its Bengaluru branch, established in 2016, has around 10 members. Mohan Kumar says anyone with some knowledge of music can be trained in musical whistling. “We conduct regular classes,” he says.
Musical whistling is also done with karaoke tracks. Contests are held for members and judges review their performances. A WhatsApp group brings them all together.
“We whistle songs popular in Kannada, Tamil, English, Hindi and other languages. We are connected with expert whistlers and judges in Mumbai, Chennai and Kochi,” says Mohan Kumar.
Whistlers of all ages are welcome to the association. “We have youngsters, college students, housewives, journalists, marine engineers, filmmakers, doctors and surgeons in our group,” he explains. Members have performed at weddings and exhibitions and even performed in mass whistling shows.
“We want to create a world record of most people whistling together next year,” Mohan Kumar says.
Log on to http://whistleindia.org/ or contact Mohan Kumar at 9663813929.