Born in 1955, Vijaya Jadhav Gatlewar was initiated into taleem by her father, Shri Dinkar V. Jadhav, a veteran exponent of the Atrauli-Jaipur gharana. Even as a teenager, Vijaya’s innate talent was evident. She won numerous competitions hosted by prestigious cultural institutions in and around Bombay.
In 1978, Vijaya took a significant step in moulding her skill into refined classical art. She became a pupil of Pandit Nivruttibuva Sarnaik at the ITC Sangeet Research Academy in Calcutta. As an ITC SRA scholar, she followed a rigorous training routine for over 15 years, listening to and thinking about music to the exclusion of almost everything else. Here, her gift was raised to the pinnacle of art by the exacting tayyari and riyaz of the guru-shishya parampara. Her guru, Pandit Nivruttibuva, himself had the benefit of guidance from eminent maestros Rajabali Khan and Alladiya Khan, and evolved a style much influenced by Alladiya Khan`s vocalism. From this proud lineage springs Vijaya`s awareness of what is most subtle and beautiful in the pure classicism of the Jaipur gharana.
Vijaya`s music subscribes to the gharana discipline of gradually unfolding a raga through the formal stages of alap, bol taan and taan, with the concurrent building up of pace. While steeped in tradition, her individual style is never submerged by it. She offers a rare richness of musical ideas clothed in novel forms and designs.
After completing her scholarship, she returned to Mumbai with her Guruji because of his illness and completed her M.A. in music from Mumbai University. Vijaya has been performing regularly ever since. Some of her concerts for the last 25 years have been at prestigious venues such as the Tansen Mahotsav, the Sawai Gandharva Mahotsav, at Bharat Bhavan Bhopal for Saptak and at many other concerts in India. She has also performed for All India Radio on their Sangeet Sammelan as well as their Mangalvariya Sangeet Sabha. She is acclaimed as much by audiences at sammelans and mahotsavs in India, as abroad.
In 1979 Vijaya was awarded the highly sought-after Surashri Kesarbai Kerkar Scholarship by the National Center for Performing Arts in Bombay; in 1989 followed the Best singer Award from the Bharatiya Sanskriti Sansad of Calcutta. Vijaya also excels in the lighter genres. An `A` grade artiste, she is regularly heard on AIR and television and has recorded a few cassettes.
Vijaya also conducts regular classes for Hindustani Classical Music at her residence. As of July 2011, she has taken on an assignment as a guru with a music institute.
Following is an excerpt from her performance at the ITC SRA Sangeet Sammelan, Kolkata on 11th August, 1980. Accompanying her on the tabla is Pandit Ananda Gopal Banerjee and on harmonium is Pandit Jyoti Goho.