Shujaat Live at Meany Shujaat Live

 
Shujaat Live at Meany Shujaat Live at Meany

Shujaat Khan is one of the prominent sitarists to dominate the concert stage today. On November 11, 1993, Shujaat Khan, accompanied by Akram Khan on tabla, performed at Meany Hall at the University of Washington as visiting artist in the division of Ethnomusicology there. That memorable evening is brought here to video form. Taken with three cameras and with the audio recorded digitally, the video covers the main part of Shujaat Khan’s rendition of Raag Jhinjhoti. This performance captures all that is unique to Shujaat Khan’s contribution to the field of sitar in Hindustani Classical Music. Beginning with his sonorous alap, which is characterized by his delicate touch; followed by jor, which he has perfected with unique rhythmic patterns and impeccable right-hand work; and concludes with a slow and fast gat and jhala. The vilamabat (slow) composition he attributes to Ustad Faiyaz Khan and represents how he incorporates vocal compositions in his repertoire, a mode of performance pioneered by his father, the legendary Ustad Vilayat Khan. The composition is strikingly simple and allows the artist to embellish the contours of its frame. The drut (fast composition) is his own, which he approaches with spontaneity, eschewing pre-planned tans and tihais, and instead bringing each tan to a close at the sthai of the composition. The momentum of the performance reaches its crescendo with the jhala. There, Shujaat demonstrates again his proclivity and ability to transform the most demanding of techniques into melodious and captivating enchantments.

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