A Tribute to Allarakha
by Zakir Hussain (tabla), Kala Ramnath (violin), Shikhar Naad Qureshi (djembe) & students of Ustad Allarakha Institute of Music (tabla, jodi pakhawaj and padhant)
Associate Sponsor: Indian Oil Corporation Ltd (IOCL)
The internationally acclaimed tabla wizard Allarakha (1919-2000) was one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century. His tabla was incomparable, both as an accompanist with flawless timing and sensitivity, and a soloist where he was a master of improvisation and effective tone production.
In this recital, the repertoire and the idiom of Punjab gharana tabla, as envisioned by Allarakha will be presented on three percussion instruments: tabla, jodi pakhawaj and djembe, by the representatives of two generations. The name of Allarakha’s son and disciple, Zakir Hussain, is synonymous with the tabla today. His virtuosic musicianship has helped raise the profile of the instrument to the highest international level.
The second generation is represented by Shikhar Naad Qureshi, Allarakha’s grandson, who carries forward the idea established by his father and guru, Taufiq Qureshi, of expressing the tabla repertoire on djembe, a drum of African origin. The second generation will also be represented by students of Ustad Allarakha Institute of Music, being trained by Fazal Qureshi, the second son and disciple of the grand master. Besides tabla, the presentation will include jodi pakhawaj, an upright pair of drums also associated with the Punjab region. The left hand drum face is smeared with moist flour for a deeper tone. Performance on the jodi pakhawaj is characterised by a robust style with bold strokes and repertoire similar to that of pakhawaj.
The event will also include a recitation of traditional repertoire (padhant), highlighting the significance of the tabla mnemonics (bols) in composing and formation of a sophisticated language of tabla.
The melodic framework is provided by Kala Ramnath, a disciple of the legendary vocalist, Pandit Jasraj. She was nominated for a Grammy and is recognised as one of the 50 best instrumentalists of the world by the Songline magazine.
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