AMOD DANDAWATE (TABLA)
Amod has been primarily trained in the Farrukhabad style under the discipleship of Pt. Samir Chatterjee since 1997. He started his training from his father Late Dr. Vasantrao Dandawate. Later he trained under Shafaat Khan while performing as his accompanist and then spent some time taking lessons from Ust. Zakir Hussain. Besides performing solo Tabla, Amod has supported classical Indian music performances and activities in the tri-state area as an able accompanist and a teacher as well. He maintains an active concert schedule and has accompanied many major artistes from India and the US. Apart from being a musician, Amod also holds a Doctorate in Electrical Engineering.
PT. KIRAN DESHPANDE (Tabla)
Pt. Kiran Deshpande was born in the family of musicians and artists. He started his journey in the world of percussion by becoming a disciple of the Hyderabad based legendary tabla navaaz Ustad Sheikh Dawood Khan of the Delhi gharana. Ustadji taught him the distinct features of Ajradha and Farookhabad Gharanas as well. Now Kiranji has a colossal repertoire of compositions from different Gharanas that he plays with amazing perfection, but Kiranji’s style of playing strokes (Bol) is most authentically of Delhi gharana. His recital is a perfect balance of ‘Dayan’ and ‘Bayan’ with overwhelming control on laya. He always has given emphasis on the tonal quality of Tabla along with the complex mathematical marvel of Taal.
An ‘A’ grade artist of All India Radio and Television, Kiranji has performed in all the major conferences in India and all over the world as a soloist as well as an accompanist par excellence. He has served as a Visiting Fellow/Professor in University of Pennsylvania and University of Calgary. Besides performing several times in Germany, France, Holland, he also represented India in The Prague Spring Festival in Czechoslovakia, World Music Convention for Peace in US.
Today Kiranji has carved a niche as an artist and musicologist of great caliber. He has been teaching Tabla and Vocal for the past 40 years and has mentored numerous PhD. Students. Indian Government has awarded Kiranji with Senior National Fellowship for his research on ‘Language of Tabla’ and his achievements as an artist and academician. His recordings are archived in India’s National Archive for the future generations to benefit from.
Even today he leads a busy lifestyle in Bhopal doing ‘Vidyadaan’, practicing, researching and performing.
Nirmalya dey (vocal)
Nirmalya Dey is a renowned dhrupad vocalist and teacher in the tradition of Dagarvani. He started his initial dhrupad training with Prof. Nimaichand Boral, who was a disciple of Ustad Nasir Moinuddin Dagar. From 1988, Nirmalya Dey learned in the true tradition of Guru-Shishya Parampara, spending extended time with another celebrated dhrupad master, Ustad Zia Fariduddin Dagar. Nirmalya continued to take advanced training and also regularly performed on the stage with Ustad’s passing. While meticulously maintaining the traditional musical form and its nuances he imbibed from his teacher, who represented the 19th unbroken generation of dhrupad performing family, Nirmalya also evolved his own distinctive style and approach to dhrupad.
Nirmalya Dey is a regular performer in all prestigious festivals and concerts in India and in few international festivals. Beside his solo performances, Nirmalya has adopted the tradition of “Jugalbandi”, the musical dialogue between two musicians of the same genre, and sang with Rudra Veena Maestro Ustad Baha’ud-din Dagar for several concerts.
Despite the demands placed on his schedule as a performer, Nirmalya Dey is a devoted teacher, grooming and initiating the next generation of artists in dhrupad. He has taught at the University of Delhi and Shriram Bharatiya Kala Kendra (Delhi) and conducted workshops around the world, including in Europe and North America. When not performing, Nirmalya teaches at the Dhrupad Gurukul in Delhi, India.
Shalmalee Joshi (vocal)
With her mellifluous voice and the rare ability to spell the audience with her “gayaki”, Mrs. Shalmalee Joshi has emerged as one of the torch bearers to lead the Hindustani Music tradition in the contemporary times. Having received her initial training from her mother Mrs. Madhuri Kulkarni, she continued with her lessons under the tutelage of Pt. Chintubuva Mhaiskar of Sangli and later took guidance from Pt. Suresh Talwalkar and Smt. Padmatai Talwalkar. She imbibed the nuances of 3 gharanas, namely Jaipur-Atrauli, Kirana & Gwalior, but decided to focus on the “Jaipur-Atrauli Gharana” which she imbibed from Late Pt. Ratnakar Pai. She also took guidance for Rajasthani folk and semi classical music from Pt. Govindaji Kalla of Jodhpur.
Shalmalee, over the years with her dedicated riyaaz, has acquired a command on both the melodic and the rhythmic elements of Hindustani Classical music. With her confident and open throated style of rendition, she establishes an instant rapport with the audience. She has an innate quality to mesmerize the listeners taking them to an altogether different level to experience the deepest emotions, and invoking expression of divinity and spirituality.
Shalmalee believes that it is only with continuous “sadhana” that one can take a step closer to the Ultimate Divine Power!! For her, this step is clearly through her music. The expression of music with the nuances of each note is the answer to the hidden queries and the quest to understand the path to reach the Ultimate Bliss.
She has been fortunate to receive appreciation from various media quarters through various concerts and performances. Some memorable ones include Times of India, Loksatta, Maharashtra Times, Dainik Bhaskar, Rajasthan Patrika, Nav Bharat Times, and many others. Apart from this, she has performed at more than 700 prestigious concerts across India.
Besides Hindustani classical, her renderings of semi classical forms such as thumri, tappa, dadra, hori, chaiti, kajari, Rajasthani folk, devotional bhajans and ghazals are equally delightful. Shalmalee Joshi with her inimitable style has been bestowed with several prestigious awards including theLate Dr. Madhav Karve and Late Sitaram Dixit award from Ganvardhan- Pune, Late. Pt. K.G. Ginde Smruti Puraskar,Surshree Kesarbai Kerkar award (N.C.P.A., Mumbai), Acharya Ratanjankar Puraskar and so on…
Tejovrush Joshi (tabla)
Tejovrush Joshi was born in a musical family. Mother Vidushi Shalmalee Joshi is a Jaipur Atrauli gharana exponent and father is a music composer. He has been taking taleem under Pt. Bapusaheb Patwardhan of the Farukhabad gharana for over 13 years.
He has acquired awards on state and national level in competitions and has rendered solo performances in many major cities throughout India. Tejovrush has been accompanying many leading musicians in the vocal and instrumental field through the years such as Pt. Raghunandan Panshikar, Pt. Sanjeev Chimmalgi, Pt. Kailash Patra, Vidushi Archana Kanhere and so on.
USHA KALLIANPURKAR (vocal)
Usha began learning music at an early age first from Shri Kamalakar Bhagwat and later from Shri Durgesh Chandavarkar, both of whom were well-known teachers specializing in the Light Classical music. She then trained under Shrimati Sudha Divekar, an exponent of the Kirana Gharana and Pandit Firoz Dastur’s disciple. Pandit Firoz Dastur, the doyen of the Kirana Gharana then took her under his wings and began training her in the true tradition of the Guru Shishya Parampara. Soon Usha began performing at established music circles in Mumbai. After moving to the United States, she continued to learn from Pandit Dastur during his visits to the US and her visits to India. In the US she took guidance from Shri Madhav Bhatki, a learned exponent of the Gwalior Gharana and a gifted composer. Usha has performed at prestigious venues in the US, in Zurich and in Sydney Australia. Accomplished jazz singers like Katchie Cartwright and Rosanne Vitro have sought and learnt vocal techniques from her. On occasion she has collaborated and performed with them at notable venues that include the Birdland Jazz Club in New York City.
KEDAR NAPHADE (HARMONIUM)
Kedar received preliminary training in Hindustani Classical Music from his grandfather, Shri Dadasaheb Naphade, Shri Arvind Gajendragadkar and over 20 years under legendary harmonium player Pt. Tulsidas Borkar. He has also had the privilege of training from Smt. Padmavati Shaligram-Gokhale, a veteran singer of the Atrauli-Jaipur gharana. Kedar has performed harmonium solo and has accompanied vocalists at numerous concerts in India, Europe and in the U.S. including prestigious festivals and venues such as the Alladiya Khan Smruti Samaroha, Dadar Matunga Cultural Center in Mumbai, Carnegie Hall and The Lincoln Center in New York etc., He has also been featured on NPR Radio.in the US. He has accompanied such luminaries as his guru Smt. Padmavati Shaligram-Gokhale, Pt. Jasraj, Smt. Veena Sahasrabuddhe, Pt. Ulhas Kashalkar, Smt. Prabha Atre, Smt. Laxmi Shankar, Pt. Phiroz Dastur, Kaushiki Chakraborty etc. He recently released his first solo Album “Suvaadini – Voice of the Harmonium”.
Mohan Shyam Sharma (pakhawaj)
Mohan Shyam Sharma is one of the leading Pakhawaj players of India. He learnt the pakhawaj from Pandit Tota Ram Sharma of Mathura. He also had the opportunity of learning pakhawaj from Pandit Prem Vallabh of delhi.
Mohan Shyam Sharma is ‘A’ grade artist of All India Radio . He started his career as an accompanist with the Dagar brothers and toured with them, and with Ustad Asad Ali Khan and Zia Mohiuddin Dagar extensively in India and abroad. He is a much sought-after accompanist for all the most eminent exponents of dhrupad, vocal and instrumental indian classical music. He also accompanied darbhanga gharana exponents- Pandit Vidhur Malika and Pandit Siya Ram Tiwari and accompanied world famous musicians of other styles as well including Pandit Ravi Shankar, Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia, and Kishori Amonkar. He has also performed solo in abroad countries like France, Italy, Belgium, Japan , Singapore, Switzerland, Portugal, Austria, Russia, United Kingdom, U.S.A and some neighbouring countries like Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Honkong.
The specificity of his playing lies in his handling of the techniques of accompaniment. It is marked by his imaginative variations anticipating on the singers variations while keeping up the required coordination and respecting the mood of the raga. He has also made a name for himself as a very talented teacher in the guru-shishya parampara style of teaching and has many students, Indian and foreigners. He has appeared on a number of CD recordings in India, Europe, England, and the USA. At present he is associated with Cambridge school in Noida (Uttar pardesh) as a pakhawaj teacher.