Hypnotic mystical and beautiful, Shivkumar Sharma creates music that transcends time and cultural traditions. As a celebrated santoor player (a Kashmiri instrument, similar to a dulcimer), Shivkumar produces a complex web of mystical sounds from the ancient 100-string instrument. In this special concert Shivkumar is joined by tabla virtuoso Yogesh Samsi and Japanese artist Takahiro Arai on tanpura (drone).
"He coaxed from the 100-string santoor the most beguiling melodies , building to virtuosic ecstasy."
The West Australian
Presented by Melbourne Recital Centre.
This performance is presented with support from the Government of Victoria and Arts Victoria.
Shivkumar is the most highly revered composer and santoor player of modern India. He was trained by his father, an eminent musician, who persuaded him to take up the santoor, a humble folk instrument from Kashmir, used to accompany sufi music. His training in vocal music and tabla has helped him to maintain perfect balance between melody and rhythm. Shivkumar can make the 100-string santoor produce a complex web of sound, which is beautiful and hypnotic. As an innovator, he made the santoor suitable for classical music by a chromatic arrangement of notes.
In a 1994 Age interview Shivkumar describes the effect of santoor music as "something like a whisper and a cascade of a waterfall. It creates romantic and pensive moods in the listener."
He has won many awards, including the high-ranking Padma Vibhushan, by the Indian President. He has been invited to the Womadelaide, Perth, Adelaide and NZ festivals since 1994.
Yogesh was born into a family with rich musical tradition. His father and mother are eminent musicians. He had training in percussion from them and first from Taranath Rao and then from Ustad Allah Rakha (Zakir Hussain's father). He is an A grade artist at the All India Radio and Indian TV. He is much in demand and has accompanied almost all major artists. He has travelled widely and performed at international and domestic festivals. He is equally good at solo performances, with an effortless style.
He is ranked next to Zakir Hussain.
who accompanies Shivkumar on the Tanpura, comes from Japan. He is learning the santoor from Shivkumar since 2007. He has studied jazz and is trained in western drums. His interest in percussion extends to the Tabla, which he is also learning in India. He speaks Hindi and English, besides Japanese. He accompanies Shivkumar on the Tanpura (drone).