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Pandit Jasraj

  • 18 Aug 2020
  • 3 min read

Why in News

Recently Pandit Jasraj, one of the world's most prominent Indian classical vocalists, passed away.

Key Points

  • Pandit Jasraj was associated with Mewati gharana of music.
  • He is known for his unconventional mixing of khayal with elements of bhakti rasa, employing harkats and murkis that were traditionally used in light classical music.
    • Khayal is a musical form based on the elaboration of a Raga with lyrical composition consisting of two stanzas.
  • He also performed semi-classical old musical forms such as the Haveli sangeet.
    • Haveli Sangeet are performances are held in temples and the compositions are sung in praise of Lord Krishna.
  • He created a unique form of jugalbandi called Jasrangi, in which a male and a female singer sing different ragas in their respective scales to merge their individual displays into one unified performance.
  • He is the recipient of numerous awards, honours, and titles, including the prestigious Padma Vibhushan and the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award.
  • Recently, the International Astronomical Union (IAU) named an asteroid after him, formally known as 2006 VP32, as Panditjasraj.
    • He was the first Indian musician to receive this honour.

Gharana

  • Gharana in Hindustani music of India, is a community of performers who share a distinctive musical style that traces to a particular instructor or region or ancestry.
  • It includes not only peculiarities of performance and repertoire but also a broader ideology of music, aesthetics, and pedagogy.
  • The style must be passed down through at least three generations before it and its practitioners may be considered a gharana.
  • Gharanas exist for both vocal and instrumental traditions as well as for dance.
  • The gharana concept gained currency only in the nineteenth century when the royal patronage enjoyed by performers weakened. Performers were then compelled to move to urban centres. To retain their respective identities, they associated themselves with the names of the regions they hailed from.
  • Some of the gharanas well known for singing are : Agra, Gwalior, Mewati, Bhendibazar, Jaipur (Khyal Singing); Mathura, Rampur, Darbhanga (Dhrupad Singing); Banaras, Lucknow, Patiala (Thumri Singing).

Source: TH

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