The bandish project

Ever heard Kathak maestro Birju Maharaj sing a thumri? In case you haven’t, drop in at the NCPA this week. The works of Mirza Ghalib, Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Vilayat Khan, Bade Ghulam Ali, Bindadin Maharaj and many other musical legends will come alive, through Bandish performances.

Ulhas Kashalkar

A Bandish is a composition set in a specific raga and is usually performed with a tabla and a harmonium as accompaniments. Each Hindustani classical gharana has their own bandish, which they fiercely protect. But with artistes such as Talat Aziz, Ulhas Kashalkar, Kaushiki Chakraborty, Malini Rajurkar and Birju Maharaj performing some of the most famous creations of these legends, the three-day festival promises to unravel many a secret.

Aziz, who will perform ghazals from both Mirza Ghalib and Faiz Ahmed Faiz, is excited about the event. “This is the first time that such an event will include ghazals. It is not that I haven’t performed a bandish or their compositions before but this time it will be different. I will perform eight works of Ghalib and eight from Faiz Ahmed Faiz.”

A khayal by vocalist Ulhas Kashalkar will explore the guru-shishya relationship between Vilayat Hussain Khan and Gajananbuwa Khan. “A bandish is like writing an essay. Everyone knows the rules but it depends on how creatively a person can write it. I am extremely lucky to be performing the works of people who made Indian classical music the powerhouse it is today,” says Kashalkar.

One of the highlights of the event, will see Kathak maestro Pandit Birju Maharaj sing Bindadin Maharaj’s thumri compositions. If classical music is your cup of tea, look no further this week.

When: July 12 to 14, 6.30 pm onwards
Where: Tata Theatre, NCPA, NCPA Marg, Nariman Point
Call: 66223724/54
entry: Rs 200 to Rs 750  

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