Posted by Liz and John Attaway, 6/24/24

World music experience takes audiences beyond borders and genres to connect with nature through music

This summer Surya Ensemble is set to take Atlanta on a journey through the four elements of earth, water, wind and fire. In its signature style, the Atlanta-based world music group will bring East and West together in a fusion of instrumental music, dance and storytelling with the current show, Elements. The enchanting performance will take audiences through four distinct movements embodying the four elements, culminating in an unforgettable experience.

“While Atlanta offers a range of diverse live entertainment and cultural performances, Surya Ensemble is an experience like no other,” says Ankit Patel, Surya Ensemble’s founder and Shehnai player. “At a Surya concert, expect to be transported to faraway lands, moved by the emotional depth of our music and energized by the sheer joy of the performance.”

Surya Ensemble is a creative ensemble of performers who host concerts around Atlanta. United under the motto “Beyond borders, beyond genres,” the talented group effortlessly creates a fusion experience that transcends the ordinary. The familiar instruments of a violin, guitar and viola are accompanied by the uncommon sound of the Persian drums and Shehnai, a traditional Indian oboe, to bring together a unique yet harmonious blend of Eastern and Western influences. A cultural dancer adds an extra layer of color and energy to the experience. The ensemble was founded by Ankit Patel, a Shehnai player who has gained a large following on Instagram as “shehnaiguy.” He is accompanied by a talented group of local artists including Michelle Winters (violin), Nima Ghadiri(daf, a Middle Eastern frame drum), Catherine Evergreen (viola), Sean Thrower (guitar) and Maria Martynova (dancer).

In the debut show, Elements, the troupe will reconnect audiences with nature through narrative journey across the four elements. With the soulful melodies, infectious rhythms and virtuosic improvisation that define the Surya experience, each piece conveys distinct emotions and elicits the essence of each element, with audience members at the show’s premiere commenting they could “practically smell the fire.” Each movement is followed by a brief note from a member of the ensemble explaining the history and usage of their instrument, tying in a vital educational moment that enhances the audience’s understanding of the show and its mission.

The next showing of Elements will take place on Thursday, July 11 at the Atlanta Theater, with additional performances of the musical journey to be announced monthly in 2024 and into 2025. Tickets can be purchased at

For more information on Surya Ensemble and upcoming performances of Elements visit, and keep up with the group on InstagramFacebook and TikTok.