1. Vidyadhar Vyas - vocal
Shailendra Misra - tabla
Bharat Bhushan Goswami - sarangi
2. Kamala Shankar - slide guitar
Samir Chatterjee - tabla
This program is co-sponsored by The Bengal Association, New Delhi, in celebration of their Diamond Jubilee Year. The program will be inaugurated by the eminent dancer Shobhana Narayan.
In the world of Hindustani Classical Music, .Vidyadhar Vyas is a name to reckon with. The prestigious tradition of the Gwalior gharana and the illustrious lineage of Sangeet Maharshi Pdt. Vishnu Digambar Paluskar contributed to his background while he was groomed in khayal, tarana and bhajan gayaki by his renowned father Gayanacharya Tdt. Narayanrao Vyas, himself an outstanding disciple of Pdt. Paluskar. Moulding his creative thinking, artistic approach and aesthetic research in the gharana gayaki with his arduous riyaz, he matured as a maestro in his own right.
Gifted with a voice that is mellow and musical, Vidyadhar Vyas presents a unique and pleasing blend of beauties of form and content of khayal. He takes every care to sustain and develop the Raga rasa and tries to harmonize it with the bhava of the compositions. Pandit Vyas is also acclaimed for his khayal and tarana compositions which are treats of pure joy and ecstasy to his listeners.
Vidyadhar Vyas holds a Master’s degree in Sociology from University of Mumbai and a Doctorate in Hindustani Classical Vocal Music from the Akhil Bharatiya Gandharva Mahavidyalaya Mandal, Mumbai.
Awarded “Top Grade” status by All India Radio, Vidyadhar Vyas is an equally popular artiste in the television media and has several cassettes and CDs to his credit. A top-notch concert performer, he has earned national and international acclaim with creditable performances in almost all the major festivals in India and abroad.
He has written several articles for leading music journals and has conceived and presented a variety of programmes on the genesis and evolution of Hindustani Raga Sangeet. Vidyadhar Vyas also excels in conducting lecture demonstrations, which are both enlightening and entertaining.
In addition to being a renowned performing artist, Vidyadhar Vyas is known as a competent teacher and guru of exceptional calibre. He has been teaching and mentoring students at undergraduate and postgraduate levels since 1964 and doctorate level since 1972. In 1973 he became Principal of the Government Music College (Rajasthan Sangeet Sansthan) at Jaipur. In 1984 he became Head of the Department of Music, University of Mumbai. In February 2004, he became the first duly selected Vice Chancellor of the newly formed Bhatkhande Music Institute Deemed University at Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh. In August 2007 he took over as Executive Director of ITC Sangeet Research Academy.
Vidyadhar Vyas has been honoured with many awards and titles by various cultural organizations, the latest is the National Award by Sangeet Natak Academy, Government of India.
Vidushi Kamala Shankar is known as the first lady of Indian Classical Slide Guitar. She has enthralled the world through her immaculate and melodious rendition of Hindustani Classical music. She is known for her tremendous control and versatility. She has an exceptional and natural ability to play the ‘Gayaki Ang’ style and her music is popularly referred as "a singing guitar".
Kamala Shankar was born in Tanjore (Tamil Nadu) and brought up in Varanasi. At the age of 4 she was initiated into vocal music by her mother and was put under the able guidance of Guru Pt. Amarnath Mishra of Varanasi. She learnt Hindustani classical vocal for 8 years. Then she transferred her musical interest to the Hawaiian slide guitar where her vocal training gave her a solid basis in music theory. Her initial training on Guitar started with Dr. Shivnath Bhattacharya and she also was given valuable guidance by Guru Padmabhushan Pt. Chhannulal Mishra of Varanasi. She has not only learnt classical music but also the Poorab Ang like Thumri, Kajari, Dadra, Chaiti with Rabindra Sangeet, and Bhajan. Later on she was under the able guidance of Pt. Bimalendu Mukherjee. Kamala completed her Doctorate on Guitar under Dr. Gopal Shankar Mishra from Banaras Hindu University. She is a Top graded Guitar Artist of A I R and has performed many National Programmes and the Radio Sangeet Sammelan of Akashawani and Doordarshan. In addition to being a well-known artist in India, she has performed throughout the world.
Kamala is credited with inventing the Shankar Slide Guitar. The most unique feature of this instrument is that it has no sound hole unlike other guitars. It has four main strings and three chikari strings with eleven sympathetic strings. It has made up of a single piece of hollow wood and the wood is Cedar. The name of this instrument is dedicated to the deity of Varanasi Bhagwan Shankar.
Kolkata-born Smt. Indra Mukherjee was brought up in a family with a rich musical tradition and started. Her fascination for Hindustani classical music soon found her under the tutelage of a stalwart like A.T.Kanan of Kirana Gharana. After moving to Delhi, Indra has been a disciple of Smt. Savita Devi, eminent exponent of Banaras Gharana, for over two decades.
Critics have said that her melodic voice lends beautifully to her extensive repertoire of Thumri, Dadra, Hori, Kajri, Chaiti and Bhajan. A graded audio-visual artist, Indra is frequently featured on radio and Television and gives regular recitals, both in India and abroad.
While doing graduate and post-graduate studies in Philosophy from Kolkata and Jadavpur University she gave in to her first love -music.
Chatterjee began his studies early with Pt. Bankim Ghosh, Pt. Balaram Mukherjee, Pt. Rathin Dhar and Mohammad Salim. His later formation as a musician occurred under the guidance of Pt. Amalesh Chatterjee (since 1966) and Pt. Shyamal Bose (since 1984). All of Samir's teachers have been from the Farrukhabad Gharana (school) of Tabla-playing, which he now represents.
Samir is rated ‘A’ as an artiste of Indian national radio and television. He can be heard on numerous recordings featuring as soloist, accompanying many of India's greatest musicians and in collaboration with western musicians of outstanding caliber. In concert Samir has accompanied many of India's greatest musicians including Pt. Ravi Shankar, Ud. Vilayat Khan, Pt. Bhimsen Joshi, Pt. Jasraj, Pt. Nikhil Banerjee, Pt. V.G. Jog, Pt . Shivkumar Sharma, Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasia, M. S. Gopalakrishnan, Ud. Amjad Ali Khan, Ud. Salamat Ali Khan, Smt. Lakshmi Shankar, Ud. Aashis Khan, Dr. L. Subramanium, Ud. Shujat Khan, Pt. Ajoy Chakraborty, Ud. Rashid Khan, Pt. Tejendra N. Mazumdar, Pt. Debashish Bhattacharya, to name only a few.
Samir Chatterjee lives in the New York-New Jersey area, and has been a catalyst in the fusion of Indian and Non-Indian music, in his own creations and others as well. He performs with Pauline Oliveros, William Parker, Branford Marsalis, Ravi Coltrane, Dave Douglas, Steve Gorn, Glen Velez, Boby Sanabria, Ben Verdery, Dance Theater of Harlem, Boston Philharmonic, Minnesota Orchestra, Ethos Percussion group, Da Capo Chamber Orchestra, Boston Musica Viva and other jazz, classical and avant guard musicians and ensembles. He is member of jazz trio SYNC with Ned Rothenberg and Jerome Harris and quintet Inner Diaspora together with Mark Feldman and Eric Friedlander. He also collaborates with Sufi-Rock singer Salman Ahmad of Junoon from Pakistan. He is also the composer and director of Indo-Flame and Nacho Nacho - both blends of Indian and Flamenco dance and music, Chhand-Anand - a world percussion ensemble and Dawn to Dusk and Beyond – on the effect of music on humans and nature. He performs with Sanjay Mishra on his CD "Blue Incantation" featuring Jerry Garcia as guest artist.
Samir Chatterjee has been teaching for the last 35 years and many of his students are established performers. He is the Founder-Director of CHHANDAYAN, an organization dedicated to promoting and preserving Indian music and culture. He has authored a comprehensive 654-page book entitled ‘A Study of Tabla’ and a guide book to Indian music titled ‘Music of India’. He is on the faculty at Yale University, Manhattan School of Music, University of Pittsburgh, New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music and University of Bridgeport in CT. He also contributes to several newspapers and periodicals. He won gold medal for his proficiency in a musical examination and has two master degrees, in English and History.
Shailendra Mishra is a top grade artist from the All India Radio and National Television. He hails from Banaras though he was born and brought up in Kolkata. You can feel the temperament of Benaras Gharana (gurus- Pt Ananda Gopal Bandopadhyay and Pt Mahadeo Mishra ) in his renderings while from Farukkhabad Gharana (Gurus- Pt Sameer Chatterjee and Pt Shyamal Bose) he has learnt the melodious representation of 'bols' and traditional compositions. His presentation is unique and individualistic. His solo and accompaniment concerts are acclaimed worldwide. He has played with stalwarts of Indian classical music and World music like Jazz, Persian Music etc. He has been to various parts of the world like the USA, Europe, Middle East, and South East Asia. Under cultural exchange program, his 4 years stay in Malaysia resulted in wide promotion of Indian music in general and tabla as an art in particular in south east part of Asia.