Welcome to Programmes in Indian Classical Music, School of Indian Heritage, RKMVERI
It is well known that Swami Vivekananda was very fond of Dhrupad music and wanted that our young men learn this form of classical music to develop a higher focus, sense of harmony with our higher nature at the microcosmic and macrocosmic levels, deep contemplative mood for self-elevation. Swami Vivekananda, best known as the monk who modernised Hinduism and took Vedanta to the West, was also a very proficient musician. He was trained in Dhrupad, one of the oldest schools of Hindustani classical music. While very young he was tutored by Ahmad Khan and Beni Gupta, two well-known musicians of his time. He studied and practiced vocal as well as instrumental music for about five years under them and true to his name, Vivekananda, which means ‘the one who exults in a clear conscience and in discernment’, quickly grasped the intricacies of Indian classical music and instruments that often take a lifetime to master. Vivekananda learnt to play the Pakhawaj from Murari Gupta, mastering the complicated Dhamar ‘tala’ or beat the percussion instrument is renowned for. Before he turned twenty, Vivekananda was an accomplished singer in Dhrupad and a much sought after Pakhawaj player.
This Deemed-to-be-University bearing Swamiji’s hallowed name has already started in a humble way, a Post-graduate Diploma in Dhrupad (Vocal) from January 2016. We introduced a Certificate Course in Pakhawaj in July 2016 as a supplement to to the Dhrupad Course. Pakhawaj has a low, mellow tone, rich in harmonics. Pakhawaj is the main accompanying instrument for Dhrupad vocal music as well as Dhrupad style performances on Rudra Veena and Surbahar.