Arshad Ali
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, Bangladesh. .

 

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 future.

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.

 

Kumar Bose
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 composer.

 

Rashid Khan
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.

 

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 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 Academy.

 

Ramesh Mishra
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.

 

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.

 

Sandeep Das
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 performances.

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.

 

Yogesh Samsi
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.

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