ITC Sangeet Sammelan - Hyderabad, 2006

Bikram Ghosh
As a percussionist, Bikram Ghosh figures prominently amongst the best in the world today. The worthy son and disciple of tabla maestro Pandit Shankar Ghosh, Bikram has also studied Carnatic taal systems under eminent mridangam exponent, Shri S.Sekhar. At a very young age, he has performed at some of the best known venues of the world and with great maestros like Pandit Ravi Shankar, Ustad Ali Akbar Khan, Ustad Amjad Ali Khan and others. He has also collaborated with many pop, jazz and western classical artistes including the likes of George Harrison, Ilan Salem and Mstilav Rostropovich. Rhythmscape, Samaa and Folktail showcase Bikram’s versatile skills as a composer.


Mashkoor Ali Khan
Ustad Mashkoor Ali Khan owes his family lineage to the great Ustad Abdul Karim Khan Sahab and the legendary Ustad Abdul Wahid Khan Sahab, the founders of the Kirana Gharana. His father, the great sarangi-nawaz Ustad Shakoor Khan Sahab was the grand nephew of Ustad Bande Ali Sahab, Beenkar. After his father’s death, Mashkoor joined the ITC Sangeet Research Academy as a scholar and now as a Guru of the Academy, he nurtures several scholars under his able guidance. His recitals reveal great imagination and vocal agility. He has inherited a veritable treasure of bandishes and rare ragas. An A-graded artist of A.I.R, Mashkoor Ali Khan has featured in several National Programmes of Akashvani and Doordarshan. He has also performed at numerous festivals and conferences including Swami Haridas Sammelan, Sawai Gandharva Sammelan, The Dover Lane Music Conference, Sajan Milap Sammelan, Apna Utsav of Govt. of India and the ITC Sangeet Sammelans. During his trips to Canada, U.S.A and Europe his superb performances have kept his audiences enthralled. He has been awarded the Abhinav Kala Sammelan, Master Dinanath Mangeshkar Award, Swaranjali Award, the title of ‘Bandish Nawaz’ and the Ustad Niaz Ahmed Khan and Ustad Faiyaz Ahmed Khan Memorial Award (Kirana Gharana).


Subhra Guha
Subhra Guha, an exponent of the Agra gharana, owes the magnificence of her voice to the superb training methods of her guru Pandit Sunil Bose, the veteran of the Agra gharana, under whom she started her training in 1982 in the traditional gurukul style at ITC-SRA. She also received invaluable guidance from Pandit K G Ginde. Subhra was trained earlier by Shri Satish Bhowmick. She has been expertly guided also by Pandit V.K.Kichlu in her mission to emerge as a vocalist of the Agra School sans its characteristic masculinity. Apart from her khayal repertoire, she also excels in thumri and dadra, which she learnt from Pandit D.T.Joshi. She has a number of CDs and cassettes to her credit. A regular A.I.R artist, she has performanced at almost all the major venues in India and in different parts of the world.


Tejendra Narayan Majumdar
Tejendra Narayan Majumdar is one of the most sought after sarod players today. Initiated into music by his grandfather, Shri Bibhuti Ranjan Majumdar and later taught by his father, Shri Ranjan Majumdar, Tejendra’s considerable talent was also directed towards vocal and tabla training under Shri Amaresh Chowdhury and Shri Anil Palit. He was then accepted by Ustad Bahadur Khan as his disciple for further development in instrumental music. Eighteen years of intensive study under him helped mature Tejendra Narayan into the genius that he is today. Securing first position at the A.I.R music competition and awarded the President’s gold medal and Pandit D.V.Paluskar award, Tejendra Narayan later studied under Pandit Ajoy Sinha Roy and finally from the living legend of Indian instrumental music, Ustad Ali Akbar Khan. One of the best equipped musicians to carry on the Senia Maihar mantle, Tejendra combines the intellectual depth and technical virtuosity of his gharana with an extraordinary tone, touch and an ambient melody that transcends any qualification. Tejendra Narayan’s brilliance and popularity as a classical artiste has also inspired him to become a very successful composer and experimenter in other genres of music. Admired all over the country and abroad, Tejendra Narayan is a true artist of the premier concert circuit, ensuring his inevitable representation at the prestigious music conferences of the world.   


Vinayak Torvi
Vinayak Torvi is gifted with a powerful and resonant voice with a rich concept of rhythm and melody. Born in a family of Keertankaars, he absorbed the ‘Samskaras’ of music from his parents and got early lessons from Vidwan Tammanna Gurav and then continued with Vidwans Narayanachar Dandapur and Narayan Rao Muzumdar of Dharwad. Later he took advanced taalim from Gayanacharya Gururao Deshpande of Gwalior gharana. Torvi acquired Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in music from Karnataka University, Dharwad. As a post graduate student of the University, he had the rare fortune of receiving taalim from stalwarts like Vidushi Gangubai Hangal, Pandit Basavraj Rajaguru and Pandit Mallikarjun Mansoor. With his unique voice culture he is proficient in presenting varieties of ragas with due justice. He has also composed many bandishes and taranas and also excels in light classical music and bhakti sangeet in Kannada, Marathi and Hindi. A regular A.I.R and Doordarshan artist, Vinayak Torvi has participated in major music conferences and festivals all over India.


Abhijit Banerjee
Abhijit Banerjee started learning tabla at a very tender age from Shri Tushar Kanti Bose, later from Shri Manik Pal and finally he came under the tutelage of Pandit Jnan Prakash Ghosh. As a child he won many music competitions of national repute. Besides tabla, he had his training in vocal music and in violin. Abhijit is now a regular performer at all the major music conferences all over India and overseas. Besides accompanying all the stalwarts of Indian classical music, Abhijit Banerjee has been a solo performer in many music conferences in India and abroad. He has toured extensively all over the world and also associated himself with the world of jazz and performed with such groups in U.S.A, Japan, England and Spain. Abhijit also represented India at the World Festival of Music in Granada, Spain. Abhijit has to his credit many CDs under reputed labels all over the world.


Jyoti Goho
Inspired by his mother’s melodious voice, Jyoti Goho developed a keen interest in music, which was carefully nurtured by his parents. He was trained in harmonium playing by Shri Deb Kumar Banerjee. He also has profound knowledge of vocal music in which his mentors were Shri Sanat Banerjee, Shri Biren Bose and Pandit A.Kanan. He is thus able to heighten the mood and spirit of any performance. Known for his sensitive playing and appropriate embellishments, his supportive role has been acknowledged, among other stalwarts, by the great maestro Pandit Bhimsen Joshi. Shri Jyoti Goho has performed with all the great vocalists of Hindustani classical music, appearing at the major Sangeet sammelans in India and abroad. He is currently a faculty member of the ITC-SRA.


Partha Sarathi Desikan
The latent impulse of learning Hindustani classical vocal music was first induced in Partha Sarathi by his mother. Consequently he trained under the meticulous care of Shrimati Dipti Mukherjee. The young Partha started performing pretty early. His participation in the Junior Talent Programme and the All Bengal Competition, organized by the West Bengal State Music Academy, brought him recognition as he achieved first position. He also secured first position in Bhajan and second position in Khayal at the A.I.R music competition. Partha proved his mettle when he was selected as a scholar of ITC-SRA and here he was nurtured in a most efficient manner by Pandit Ajoy Chakrabarty, the maestro of Patiala gayaki.


Pulak Sarkar
At the age of eight, Pulak Sarkar started learning Indian classical vocal music and Rabindra Sangeet. The talented student soon started performing on stage and within a short span performed on A.I.R. Pulak consequently took up learning piano, becoming a disciple of the maestro Shri V. Balsara. He later learned the techniques of Jazz piano from Sam Engineer. Today he is a highly sought-after professional keyboard player, performing in all major recordings and concerts in India and overseas at several venues at U.K., U.S.A. and Canada. He is also a composer and music arranger associated with All India Radio and television, for film and non-film music. He has accompanied renowned performers like light vocalist Arati Mukherjee and rhythm expert Bikram Ghosh.


Rajhesh Vaidhya
Son of rhythm stalwart Shri K.M. Vaidyanathan, Rajhesh Vaidhya was initiated as a child by Smt Jayalakshmi, after which Smt Rama Nambinarayanan helped him develop his skills on the Saraswathi Veena. He was able to perfect his training under world-renowned maestro Shri Chitti Babu. Apart from his blistering speed, Rajhesh’s veena playing is distinguished by his use of electric or amplified strings. A regular concert performer in India, he has also toured Europe, Brazil, South Africa, Australia, Singapore, Malaysia, Mauritius, Canada, USA and Switzerland. He has several classical and non-classical albums to his credit. In 2001, he was honoured with the title “Shri Kanchi Kamakoti Peeta Aasthana Vidwan” A multi-talented artiste, in addition to instrumental performances, he has directed the music for teleserials by directors Vidyasagar, Harris Jeyaraj, Bhardhwaj, Deva and many others. He has also acted in the famous tele-serial ‘Premi’ directed by Iyakkunar Sigaram Sri. K. Balachander.


Rupashree Bhattacharya
Born into a family of musicians, Rupashree Bhattacharya was tutored in vocal music by her father, Shri Durga Charan Bhattacharya and later by Srimati Sipra Bose. In 1996, she became a scholar at the ITC Sangeet Research Academy under the tutelage of Pandit Ajoy Chakrabarty. Noticing her innate talent in playing the harmonium her mentor gradually guided her through the intricacies and exacting standards of accompaniment. Rupashree, a proficient vocalist herself, quickly imbibed his teaching and has developed into a sensitive and unobtrusive accompanist. Presently, she is a faculty member of ITC Sangeet Research Academy and has accompanied many of the leading Hindustani classical vocalists of the country.


Samar Saha
For years now, Pandit Samar Saha has been widely known for his dexterous tabla playing and rare musicianship. With a brilliant sense of accompaniment he contributes immensely to any raag sangeet performance. Samar Saha was initially trained by his father Shri Sudhangshu Bhusan Saha and elder brother Shri Tarak Saha. Later he received extensive taalim from Shri Satchidananda Goswami and Shri Krishna Kumar Ganguly (Natu Babu) of the Benaras gharana. A much sought-after artist today, he has played with the greatest stalwarts of Hindustani music and has participated in all the prestigious music festivals in India and overseas. Pandit Samar Saha is a faculty member of ITC-SRA.


S Sekhar
The renowned mridangist from Calcutta, Shri S.Sekhar learnt this art from Shri L.V.Vaidyanathan. Shekharji has been serving the cause of Carnatic Music since 1966 when he had his Arangetram performance. Almost single handedly keping alive the Carnatic percussion tradition in Calcutta, he has a huge following of students in the city and elsewhere. He has accompanied distinguished musicians like Shri T.R.Mahalingam, Shri S.Balachander, Shri Lalgudi Jayaraman, Dr. Balamurlikrishna, Dr. N.Ramani and Shri Kadri Gopalnath. Some of the awards bestowed upon him are the “Isai Peraringar” by the Tamil Manram and the “Jadu Bhatta” award for being a “Great Guru” by The Salt Lake Cultural Association. Sekharji has, besides performing extensively in India, also performed widely in Canada, USA and Europe. He is well known for his keen sense of artistic combination, which is amply displayed in his ‘Jugalbandi’ performances with tabla stalwarts Pandit Swapan Chowdhury or Shri Bikram Ghosh.


V Suresh
Vaidyanathan Suresh is a rare drummer who has mastered the art of playing the ghatam. Dynamic, mellifluous and aesthetically aggressive, he can adapt with remarkable speed & precision to the techniques of drumming of any part of the world. A specialist in ‘Double Gamaka’ (i.e.) playing the Gumuki, the base notes with both wrists with equal ease, Suresh has developed numerous garlands of rhythm exclusive of his style. The uncompromising strict adherence to tradition clubbed with innovations, has won laurels for Suresh from doyens of Carnatic music. He has learnt the techniques of playing on a variety of South Indian percussion instruments like mridangam, kanjira, thavil, konnakkol, dolki, to name a few. Working with his guru Shri T V Gopalakrishnan, he has performed in the company of great musicians like George Harrison, on Indian Jazz-East West fusion music and has several years’ experience in composing and conducting Jazz Orchestra.

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