A mix of classical sounds from two masters

New Delhi, Feb 12 (IANS) Sitarist Ustaad Shujaat Khan and Tabla maestro Zakir Hussain are all set to offer the capital an interesting jugalbandi on Monday.

The upcoming concert is going to be a spontaneous mix of classical sounds that come from the core of their art and heart.

The show is being organised by Ustaad Vilayat Khan Music Foundation at Modern School, Barakhamba Road here, as a celebration of art and friendship of the two masters.

“The concept of Sitar and Tabla playing together is very traditional. This concert is special because both the artistes are the best in their circles. It is causing ripples in the classical community because the two have never played together,” Azaan Khan from Ustaad Vilayat Khan Music Foundation told IANS on Sunday.

“It is perhaps a once in a life-time opportunity. What the audiences will listen to is the best and the cream of classical music,” he said.

Classical music has a niche audience, but this aspect adds to its fine quality, according to Ustad Shujaat Khan.

“Places like the Carnegie Hall (Music hall in New York) are specifically for fine arts. To see the height that classical music has reached, one has to see the venues,” he said.

“Bollywood and other forms of Hindi music have travelled all over the world but only those who know Hindi can understand it, unlike classical music,” he added.

Shujaat Khan follows a unique style of playing sitar and says that the credit belongs to his father alone.

“At one time, Sitar was heavily based on stroke pattern. It was my father Vilayat Khan, who included gayiki (singing) in Sitar. His style tries to bring the instrument as close as possible to the human voice in terms of replication,” he explained.

“It is more tiring and difficult for the fingers of course, but it has so much melody that every instrumentalist follows gayaki. If you move away from it, you lose the romanticism,” he said.