Hindustani violinist Kala Ramnath will be performing a jugalbandi with tabla player Pandit Mukundraj Deo on 12th December at the Ravindra Bharathi auditorium. The program starts at 4:30pm and ends at 7:15pm.
Kala Ramnath, the contemporary torch bearer of the Mewati Gharana, today ranks among the most outstanding instrumental musicians in the North-Indian classical genre. Born into a family of prodigious musical talent which has given Indian music such violin legends as Prof. T N Krishnan and Dr. N Rajam, Ramnath began playing the violin at the tender age of three under the strict tutelage of her grandfather Vidwan Narayana Iyer. Simultaneously, she received training from her aunt Dr. N Rajam. Thereafter, for fifteen years, she was under the training of Mewati vocal maestro, Sangeet. She has taken violin so close to vocal music that today her violin is called "The Singing Violin".
Ramnath has performed at all major music festivals in India, prominent among them being the Shankarlal Festival, New Delhi; Tansen Samaroh, Gwalior; Saptak, Ahmedabad; Sawai Gandharva Music Conference, Pune; Sankat Mochan Sangeet Samaroh, Varanasi; Doverlane Music Conference, Kolkata; and Ustad Amir Khan Sangeet Samaroh, Bhopal. In 1984, she won the President's award in the prestigious AIR music competition. Her other awards include Pandit Jasraj Gaurav Puraskar, Sur Ratna and Sur Mani.
Ramnath is also an A-grade artiste in radio and television. She has performed in some of the most prestigious international festivals including the World Music Festival in Montreal, Canada; Rhythms Of India in Ottawa, Canada, presented by the Canadian Arts Council; Celebrations of India's 50th year of Independence in Europe by ICCR; North Sea Jazz Festival in Cape Town, South Africa; Bath Festival in Bath, England; and the South Asian Heritage Festival in Toronto, Canada. She has also performed at prestigious venues like Queen Elizabeth Hall London and Sydney Opera House.
Of late, Ramnath has been experimenting with several genres of music, both within the traditions of Indian classical music and crossovers to other types of music. Her violin-vocal duets with Sanjeev Abhyankar, and violin-sitar duets with Purbayan Chatterjee have been highly acclaimed by critics and connoisseurs. Ramnath now performs for an unique group called "Raga Afrika" which is a collaboration with a few South African musicians including jazz guitarists Odutayo Kunle and Lucas Khumalo, and percussionists John Hassan and Frank Paco.
Although Mukundraj received initial guidance in Indian classical music from his mother Manjiri Deo, a well-known Kathak dancer, the late Pt. Brijraj Mishra of Banaras Gharana and Pt. Mridangraj of Ajrada Gharana were his teachers in tabla. He was awarded a national scholarship (1990) and a national fellowship (1999) by the Government of India. He holds a degree of Sangeet Visharad in tabla, and is a recipient of the Talmani title from Sursingar Sansad of Bombay. An 'A' grade artiste of All India Radio and Doordarshan, Mukundarj is a graduate in commerce.
For the past few years, Mukundraj has been performing all over the world as a soloist and as an accompanist to many well-known performers of instrumental and vocal music, as well as to Kathak dancers. Among them are artistes such as Pandit Jasraj, Begum Parveen Sultana, Pandit C R Vyas, Dr. Prabha Atre, Pandit Prabhakar Karekar, Arti Alkalikar-Tikekar, Pandit Birjoo Maharaj, the late Nataraj Gopikrishna, Ustad Rais Khan, Dr. N Rajam, Pandit Kartik Kumar and Satish Vyas.
He has travelled with many of these musicians throughout India and other countries of the world. He has been invited to perform in several prestigious music festivals and conferences in India and abroad.
Please contact the Department of Culture at 2323-3672 for further details.