Armando Gonsalves has been in the forefront of the art, culture, music, heritage, journalism and so many other worlds in Goa.
MIXING ART, CULTURE, MUSIC & HERITAGE WITH THE HARD CORE LIFE OF PROPERTY INVESTMENTS:
Despite being in the hard-core business of property investments and construction, he has always felt that he is the bridge between the two diametrically opposite poles of Goa. His passion for music and the arts started off at a very young age when he started learning the piano at the tender age of 5 under the tutelage of a teacher whom he remembers to this very day. Sister Olga of Mary Immaculate Girls High School was the one who encouraged him to be the pianist that won so many accolades in the music world.
With his sister Rita being a constant competitor as to who was the best pianist, the work towards becoming an accomplished pianist was further boosted when Armando won the Exhibition Award for Achievement, from the Trinity College of Music London when he was only 12 years old. During the later years of his classical music training, the fabulous teacher from Margao, Ms Camilla Alvares whom he remembers with great fondness, ably tutored him. More than anything else, it was his mother Aduzinda who gave him the required encouragement that was necessary at that important stage of his life.
Armando was also deeply involved with the art world and this took him to doing paintings, and participating in children’s art competitions when he was in school. Some of the paintings still don the walls of his palatial home, Gonsalves Mansion, which is also known as The Home of Jazz in India.
THE SPIRIT OF GOA RULES VIA HERITAGE JAZZ:
It is this passion that drives Heritage Jazz, a concept that Armando believes is at the core of Goan life. Through his penchant for good design and good life, he believes that the best way forward for Goa is the life of richness in spirit, which is something that is so abundant in Goa. Development is essential, very essential, but should it be at the cost of the very spirit of Goa? He believes that Goa has a huge potential of being the Culture Capital of the East, and through this is the financial success that we will achieve. Since he comes from the building trade, he believes that private developers can be called in to build institutions, colleges, schools etc. since private funds will always want profits, and there is nothing wrong in that.
INNOVATIVE CREATIVE CONCEPTS:
Armando has the penchant of creating innovative concepts all the time. Whether it was reviving the Carnival in the late 80’s, or churning out Goa’s first Newspaper Colour Pages in 1990, or bringing pizza for the first time to Goa in 1985 through Chicky Chocky, the company he created then, or creating the powerhouse of Jazz in India etc., he is a person whose foundation is based on creativity. He also writes music columns on the internet and also contributes to the local media as well.
DEEP INVOLVEMENT WITH CHILDREN AS WELL AS WITH CAUSES OF THE HEART:
Heritage issues are close to his heart, and he is always there to back the architectural and cultural heritage of Goa. Deeply involved with children, he takes music workshops to various schools in Goa, and this commitment is done through the philanthropic spirit which he is so deeply involved with. Besides, Armando does not lose a chance to do things for the community, and as can be seen from “Jazz for a Cause”, most of the shows organized under the Heritage Jazz banner are to raise funds for a needy cause. He is also deeply involved with the Sharada Mandir School via the Parent Teacher Association, and is a member of the Governing Council of the Sunshine School.
Armando clearly believes in the principle of giving, and is zealous about his pursuit of bringing people together on the music platform. He already supports various causes in schools, for the downtrodden and the needy, and is keen that the Goan music lobby gets together and does Goa proud by giving and giving and giving, to people who deserve.
Armando has been a writer all his life. He contributes to the local media, and has written the music column for the Times of India besides being actively involved with the Navhind Times, the Herald, Gomantak Times and others. He also contributes to various web magazines across the globe. If there is a strength that can truly describe him other than music, it is his penchant for writing, something that he does very expressively.
Peace has always been something that is close to Armando’s heart. Having been embroiled in typical family issues that bog down big families in Goa, he has the experience of handling vexed family issues which he has done so with aplomb. This has given him wide experience in legal as well as taxation issues, and he actively helps people who have similar situations. He is keen on forming an organization that can handle Goan family issues on a holistic platform, with peace for all as its main objective.
It is this that has made him create the concepts of Fusion for Peace and Jazz for Peace which were held soon after the horrific terror attacks across the country. The two events brought people of different walks of life together, and there was a feeling of camaraderie, love and charity in the airAll this culminatedin Armando being awarded the Karmaveer Puraskar Award for Peace and Harmony, photograph of which is below. He is only the second Goan to be decorated with this prestigious award! He attributes all this due to his faith in God and you can see his views on this subject by clicking here. All this is eventually in dedication to his beloved children Zenisha and Nihal Gonsalves for whom he does all these things as a reminder as to how beautiful life is.
Armando receiving the Karmaveer Award, the first Goan to receive it in this prestigious category of Promotion of peace and harmony, the second overall
Karmaveer Award Certificate
Armando and his children during Christmas 2008
Check out this also...