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Zakir Hussain And Masers Of Indian Percussion

Press Release

World Music presents Zakir Hussain & Masters of Indian Percussion on Saturday, May 10, 8pm at Sanders Theatre, 45 Quincy Street, Cambridge. Tickets are $45, $35 and $28. For tickets and information call World Music (617) 876-4275 or buy online at www.WorldMusic.org

In a dazzling display of Indian percussion, tabla superstar Zakir Hussain is joined by the finest percussionists from India’s classical and folk traditions, including the great sarangi (stringed instrugment) maestro Dilshad Khan and Niladri Kumar, undoubtedly one of the finest young sitar virtuosos. The 10-member ensemble also features Hussain’s brothers Fazal Qureshi on tabla and kanjira and Taufiq Qureshi on various percussion instruments, Vijay Chauhan on pakhawaj and dholak (folk drums), Abbos Kosimov on doira (Uzbek national percussion instrument), Ram Kishan on nagada (Indian kettle drums), and the Meitei Pung Cholom Performing Troupe, one of India’s premier performance troupes dedicated to Manipuri drum and dance styles.

Under the direction of percussion legend Zakir Hussain, the concert offers the listener an opportunity to experience both melodic (raga) and rhythmic (tala) development as well as witness the dazzling and athletic dancing drummers of Manipur. The concert will feature the traditional repertoire of North Indian drumming on tabla in solo and duet as well as excursions exploring the frontier between traditional and contemporary, folk and classical.

Zakir Hussain, a classical tabla maestro of the first order, has made unprecedented strides in bringing his instrument to a global audience. His playing is marked by uncanny intuition and masterful improvisational dexterity, founded in formidable knowledge and study. Widely appreciated as an international phenomenon, his consistently brilliant and exciting performances have established him globally as one of India's most renowned cultural ambassadors. The favorite accompanist for most of the greatest classical musicians and dancers of India, including Ali Akbar Khan, Ravi Shankar and others, Hussain has also been a chief architect of the world music movement with his prodigious, incomparable and historic collaborations. He has been a chief architect in the world music movement working with many jazz and rock musicians, such as John McLaughlin, the Grateful Dead, Van Morrison and many others. He has been the recipient of many awards and honors, including the "Padma Bhushan," awarded in January 2002, "Padma Shri," the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award, the 1999 National Heritage Fellowship Award (the USA’s highest award for masters in the traditional arts), and a Grammy for his part as performer, composer and co-producer of Mickey Hart's Planet Drum. His album Saturday Night in Bombay with his band Remember Shakti was nominated for a World Music Grammy in 2002. Most recently, he received a special commission to compose for the Silk Road Project, which he performed live with cellist Yo-Yo Ma for the Mark Morris Dance Group.

Fazal Qureshi began his training early under the keen eye of his father and guru, Ustad Allarakha. With encouragement and inspiration from his elder brother Zakir Hussain, Fazal has developed a style distinguished by a fine sense of rhythm, versatility and eloquence. He has performed both as a soloist and as an accompanist in prestigious "Sangeet Sammelans" in India as well as major festivals abroad.

Taufiq Qureshi, an ace percussionist of India, is also an acclaimed composer. Being the son and disciple of the legendary tabla maestro Ustad Allarakha, Taufiq’s performances showcase the traditional flavor and intricacies of Indian rhythm and the sparkle of contemporary world percussion. Taufiq’s trademark style incorporates body and vocal percussion to create unique rhythmic motifs spanning across cultures. While the realm of studio music keeps him constantly engaged creatively, Taufiq is continuously evolving as a percussionist with a command over a wide variety of percussion instruments and styles in the ever-inspiring world of live performance.

Niladri Kumar is the son and disciple of celebrated sitarist Pandit Kartick Kumar, is one of India’s finest young sitar virtuosos, already recognized for his dazzling technical prowess and the maturity of his melodic acumen. A rare instrumentalist equally at home playing traditional classical or contemporary world music, he has proven to be one of the brightest talents of his generation, regarded with high esteem by his peers and promising to extend the musical horizon.

Abbos Kosimov was born in Tashkent, Uzbekistan to a very musical family. He studied at the College of Culture and Music under doyra master Mamurjon Vahabov and graduated in 1988. In 1991, Abbos won second prize in Central Asia and Kazakistan’s Competition of Percussion Instruments. A few years later, he established the “Abbos School” where he taught the talented youth of his country to play the doyra (presently there are over 100 students in his school). In 2005, he moved to the United States and he has since recorded and/or performed with the likes of Stevie Wonder, Randy Gloss’s “Hands OnSemble”, Giovanni Hidalgo and Zakir Hussain.

Ram Kishan was born 1938 in Pushkar, Rajasthan and was a disciple of Shri Laluji in the traditional music of the region. Deeply inspired by the sounds of the Nagada played in the Brahma temple at Pushkar, Ram took to playing the instrument at a very young age. He has achieved a high degree of excellence playing in Khayal performances all over Rajasthan, and also as an accompanist to many of India’s most famous musicians. In 1976, he received the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for his contribution to the folk music of Rajasthan.

Dilshad Khan was born in Jodhpur, Rajasthan and descends from a rich lineage of talented musicians. At the age of six, he began studying sarangi under the tutelage of his father Ustad Nasir Khan, a well known and gifted sitar player, his grandfather Ustad Gulab Khan, both an accomplished sarangi player and vocalist, and his uncle Ustad Sultan Khan, a world renowned sarangi player.  He has played with such revered artists as Ustad Zakir Hussain, Ustad Gulam Mustafa Khan, Pandit Bhavani Shakar, Aabida Parveen, Siva Mani and Luis Bank. Dilshad has given a wide range of concerts all over the world and his artistry can be heard on the silver screen of both Bollywood and Hollywood.

Vijay Chauhan is one of the foremost exponents of the dholki (this premier folk percussion instrument of Maharashtra has been played in his family for generations). His mother, Sulochana Shamrao Chauhan, is the greatest exponent of the famous Marathi folk singing style, lavani. Besides dholki, he plays other folk instruments, such as the duff, chanda, halgi, and dafali. Chauhan is a much sought-after musician and plays regularly for famous composers of Hindi, Marathi, and Tamil films. He has also toured England and Australia with the great folk artist Gurdass Mann.

Meitei Pung Cholom Performing Troupe is one of India’s premier performance troupes, combining dance, drumming and martial arts in their repertoire. Dedicated to the rejuvenation of traditional folk and classical Manipuri dance styles, they were established in 1963 by the late Guru Padmashri Amubi Singh, have performed thousands of concerts in India and have enjoyed many successful international tours.

To download high resolution digital photos go to www.WorldMusic.org and click “PRESS CENTER”.

World Music is funded in part by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency which also receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts.

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