Arshad Ali is indeed one of the few prodigies to live up to
their initial promise. He is the grandson of the great
sarangi maestro late Padmashree Ustad Shakoor Khan Saheb of
the Kirana gharana and he has been fortunate to receive
taalim from his maternal uncles, Ustad Mashkoor Ali Khan and
Ustad Mubarak Ali Khan.. When he was four years old, he was
heard by the judges of a talent contest organized by ITC
Sangeet Research Academy at Delhi. His impressive
performance resulted in his move to Kolkata to learn music
at the ITC-SRA as its youngest scholar.
This young man has received numerous accolades and has
featured in the ITC Sangeet Sammelans held all over India,
at the Bhatkhande Sangeet Sammelan, Lucknow, Harivallabh
Sangeet Sammelan, Jullundhar and at the ‘Sangeet Pratibha’
organized by the Sangeet Natak Akademi, Patna. Wherever he
has performed, he has been the cynosure of all eyes. With
his riyaz and taalim, he upholds the traditions of one of
the oldest and most beautiful gayakis of the Kirana gharana.
He has also been invited to perform in Holland. In 2002 he
was awarded the Jadubhatta Purashkar and his solo album
titled ‘Murchhana’ was released by Bengal Foundation,
Ayaan Ali Khan
Representing the seventh generation of a musical
lineage known as the Senia Bangash School, Ayaan Ali Khan is
the younger son and disciple of the sarode maestro Ustad
Amjad Ali Khan.
Making his debut at eight, Ayaan has been performing
concerts world wide ever since. He has given many solo
performances and also assisted his illustrious father at
concerts. He made his UK Debut in 1989 and the US Debut in
1991 at the Asia Society in New York and performed at St.
James Palace in July 1997 for the Temenos Academy.
From 1997 onwards Ayaan was making appearances at Carnegie
Hall, Smithsonian, Palais Beaux-Arts in Brussels, Chicago
Symphony Center, Esplanade in Singapore, Summer Arts
Festival in Seattle, Edinburgh Music Festival and the Royal
Festival Hall in London. More recently, he performed at the
Symphony Hall in Fukuoka and New York’s Town Hall in the
fall of 2004.
In November 2002, Ayaan co-authored a book with his brother,
Amaan titled ‘Abba – God’s greatest gift to us’ on his
father’s life published by Roli Books.
He has over eight recordings that include three solos. His
recent recordings include ‘Sarode for Harmony’ live at
Carnegie Hall, ‘Strings Attached’ with Cellist Matthew
Barley recorded at Royal Festival Hall and his latest solo,
‘Sonata’. Ayaan made his debut electronica album called
‘Reincarnation’ in August 2005.
Kaushiki Desikan (Chakraborty)
Daughter of the world-renowned vocalist Ajoy
Chakrabarty, Kaushiki Desikan (Chakraborty) was born and
brought up with music all around her. Her mother Chandana
Chakrabarty initiated her into vocal music. Her formal
taalim started at the age of seven when she became a student
of the legendary Pandit Jnan Prakash Ghosh. Later she was a
scholar at the ITC Sangeet Research Academy under the
tutelage of her father Ajoy Chakrabarty.
Kaushiki’s recitals are marked by a maturity far beyond her
years, sound musical concepts and remarkable spontaneity.
Gifted with a melodious and flexible voice she has charmed
audiences wherever she has performed, with her fluent
renditions of khayal, thumri, bhajan and even songs of
lighter varieties. Great luminaries of Indian music repose a
great hope in Kaushiki and have blessed her for a glorious
Kaushiki has already participated in many major concerts
including the Dover Lane Music Conference, the ITC Sangeet
Sammelans in India, the Spring Festival of Music
(California), Parampara Programme (Los Angeles) and others.
Her brilliant performances have fetched her many awards. The
Salt Lake Cultural Association of Calcutta presented her
with the “Jadu Bhatta” Award in 1995. Kaushiki received the
“Outstanding Young Person” Award from the Rotary Club of
Calcutta for 2000 and the BBC Award in 2005.
Born in a well known musical family of Kolkata,
Pandit Kumar Bose has carved a special niche for himself in
the world of tabla, both as a soloist as well as an
accompanist. After rigorous training under his father,
Pandit Biswanath Bose and subsequently under the legendary
Pandit Kishen Maharaj, he has emerged as one of the most
sought after percussionists of his generation and a role
model for a host of younger tabla players. He has been able
to evolve a style of his own, adding a fresh dimension to
the traditional Benaras baaj and has taken it to new heights
through his distinctive sound production, immaculate
knowledge and enviable stage craftsmanship – a combination
all performers yearn for. Among his many concerts with world
renowned maestros, special mention must be made of his
performances with Pandit Ravi Shankar, Zubin Mehta, Yehudi
Menuhin, Ustad Amjad Ali Khan, Ustad Imrat Khan and Pandit
Jasraj. Apart from tabla, he is a marvelous singer and
There have indeed been only a very few classical
vocalists who have had such a mesmerizing impact on
listeners and such an astounding influence on the gayaki of
budding singers as effortlessly as Rashid Khan.
Hailed by Pandit Bhimsen Joshi as one of the most notable
torchbearers of the Hindustani classical tradition in the
twenty first century, Rashid is a gandabandh shagird of his
illustrious granduncle Ustad Nissar Hussain Khan of the
Rampur Sahaswan gharana.
Debuting in performance at the age of eleven, Rashid was
adjudged an ‘A’ graded artiste by AIR in his very first
audition. The phenomenon of stupendous success and an
endless list of concerts, in the greatest of festivals in
the country and abroad, has followed him since.
The remarkable ability to enthrall listeners, an almost
divine gift that Rashid possesses, has been diligently
developed by this young singer to incorporate nuances of
other styles. And yet Rashid Khan’s singing bears a
distinctive stamp of his very own, grand and majestic.
Shujaat Hussain Khan
Shujaat Hussain Khan is amongst the finest sitarists of the
younger generation. He is the son and disciple of the sitar
maestro Ustad Vilayat Khan, a legend in his own lifetime.
Shujaat Khan represents the seventh generation in an
unbroken lineage of musical stalwarts – representing the
Imdadkhani (Etawah) gharana.
Growing up in an atmosphere where music was a way of life
and groomed by his legendary father in order to carry the
family’s legacy into the next century, Shujaat started
learning the sitar at the age of three and was giving public
performances by the time he was six. He has been regularly
performing on stage, the All India Radio and Doordarshan
since then. Shujaat Hussain Khan has enthralled audiences on
every major stage in India and abroad, cutting a number of
very successful discs and winning prestigious awards. He is
also in the teaching faculty of the University of
California, Los Angeles.
Ananda Gopal Bandopadhyay
Early initiation into the world of music by his father, Shri
Radha Gopal Bandopadhyay and years of rigorous riyaz under
the watchful eyes of the much respected tabla and thumri
exponent of the Banaras gharana, Pandit Mahadeo Prasad
Mishra, have resulted in the making of this exceptional
tabla maestro, Pandit Ananda Gopal Bandopadhyay. His
knowledge of vocal music helps him to strike a balance
between subtle artistry and power-packed taiyari in all his
performances as a soloist or accompanist. He is now a top
graded artiste of Akashvani. Apart from his performances all
over the world, he is associated with many prestigious
organizations like the Song & Drama Division, AIR Delhi and
the Amir Khusro Society, Chicago. He is also a faculty
member of the ITC Sangeet Research Academy.
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 Sanat Banerjee,
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 by maestros like
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 Sangeet Research
Born in 1952 Ramesh Mishra is one of the outstanding
exponents of Sarangi from the Benaras gharana and represents
the twenty-third generation of Sarangi players in his
family. The unique stringed instrument Sarangi is one of the
most difficult instruments to master despite its popularity
as an accompanying instrument. Ramesh Mishra’s ability to
exploit the potentials of Sarangi is incomparable.
Initiated by the great Sarangi maestro late Pandit Gopal
Mishra and later groomed by his father late Pandit Ramnath
Mishra, Ramesh Mishra has come under the tutelage of
legendary Sitar maestro Pandit Ravi Shankar for the last
several years. The association brought both the maestro and
the disciple together in performances, recordings and
projects all over the world.
An All India Radio and Doordarshan artiste, he has
accompanied almost all the leading musicians of India and
performed in numerous conferences and festivals all over the
glove both as a soloist and as an accompanist. He has been
honoured by the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for his sincere
service to music.
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.
Sandeep Das is one of the front line tabla players in India
today. Born in 1971, he was initiated into the art of
playing tabla at the tender age of 8. Sandeep is one of the
favorite disciples of the tabla maestro Pandit Kishen
Maharaj ji, the doyen of Banaras gharana. Like his guru,
Sandeep too has a strong inclination towards a systematic
presentation during his performances – be it solo or
accompaniment. Clarity of “bols”, depth and balancing of
sound, difficult layakaris and mathematical calculations are
some of the specialties to be taken notice of during his
A mature artist at a young age, Sandeep has accompanied many
top artistes at concerts in India and abroad. He has also
given regular performances on TV and Radio, which include
national Programmes.. He has many CDs, Video and Audio
cassettes though the world.
Born in 1968 into a rich musical tradition, Shri Yogesh
Samsi inherited music from his father Pandit Dinkar Kaikini,
a renowned vocalist and also from his mother Smt Shashikala
Kaikini, a musician of repute. Yogesh learnt Tabla first
from Pandit H.Taranath Rao and thereafter was under the
tutelage of the renowned maestro Ustad Allah Rakha of the
Punjab gharana. An ‘A’ graded artist of A.I.R & Doordarshan,
Yogesh has given many solo performances and accompanied many
musicians of repute such as Pandit Dinkar Kaikini, Pandit
K.G.Ginde, Pandit Jasraj, Pandit Bhimsen Joshi, Pandit
Shivkumar Sharma, Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasia, Pandit Ram
Narain, Ustad Sultan Khan, Smt Shobha Gurtu, Ustad Shahid
Parvez, Ustad Rashid Khan and Pandit Ajoy Chakrabarty. He
has had the privilege of accompanying his guru Ustad Allah
Rakha and Ustad Zakir Hussain in their solo performances.
Yogesh has performed in prestigious music festivals all over
India and in Europe, USA, Canada, Japan & South Africa. In
1992 Yogesh accompanied the renowned Sarangi player Pandit
Ram Narain in the World Music Festival in Berlin, Germany.
In 1997, he participated in the World Music Conference in
the Theatre de La Ville in Paris, France.