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Neela Bhagwat and Saint poet Kabir Have become synonymous terms over the past five years. Neela Bhagwat who is recognized as one of the most authentic voices of Hindustani music has established herself as a leading exponent of the Gwalior style of singing which specializes not only in the Khayal form but also in other related forms like the thumri ,the tappa, the ashtapadi, the tarana and the khayalnuma. A thorough grounding in this rich tradition at the hands of revered gurus like Pt. Sharadchandra Arolkar and Pt. Jal Balaporia activated Neela Bhagwat's creative faculty. It is her constant search for new avenues of innovative expression which led her to the saint poet Kabir.

The trauma of communal riots in 1992 was the motivating factor for Neela Bhagwat, Many classical singers have sung Kabir bhajans before. In Neela Bhagwat's hands they do not remain mere bhajans. Instead, they turn into compositions invested with new meaning, a vehicle for conveying eternally relevant ideas. Neela Bhagwat employs the idiom of the Gwalior style with its purity of ragas for composing tunes which she sings in her euphonious voice. It is her ability to portray the emotion of Kabir's poems with unusual fervour and intensity which has enthralled audiences all over India as well as Europe. Her performance of Kabir songs was enthusiastically welcomed by Germans in particular. Her programme of Kabir. Compositions at prestigious venues like the N.C.P.A., Y.B.Chavan Centre, Bharat Bhavan and Raj Bhavan in Bhopal have drawn a warm response.

Neela Bhagwat's album of Kabir songs was unanimously hailed by music lovers and critics." Something far removed from the rut," said critic Subhash K. Jha writing in Screen it is an album which has us clinging to every note in rapt attention.The singer expresses motley shades of the ancient poetry as though she were handpicked by Kabir himself to enunciate the deepest relevancies of the lines. For listeners craving for a devotional experience beyond the peddler's piety afforded in the average bhaj an albums.," adds Aa. For Kaumudi Marathe writing in The Pioneer "melody hangs powerfully in the air. " According to Arundhati Subramanium writing in The Sunday Review of ]he Times of India, it "represents an important milestone in Neela Bhagwat's quest to create music that is meaningful without being jingoistic ,moving without being maudlin."

 

Name: Ms. Neela Bhagwat 

Address: 4/13 Shah bldg., Bhagat Road, Kataria Road, Mahim, Bombay,

400016, India  Tel: 009122 4308935, Fax: 009122 4362373

E-Mail:  neelab@iname.com , b_neela@hotmail.com 

Educational Qualifications 

M. A. in Marathi and Sanskrit, M. A. Sociology from the University of Bombay

Musical Training 

Under Shri G. T. Tilak of Jaipur style. Under Pt. Shartchandra Arolkar and Pt. Jal Balaporia of Gwalior. Style. 

Work In Other Arts

Dance: Training in Kathak Style of dance under Guru Lachchu Maharaj

Theatre :Played the main role in 'Suno JanantneJaya' directed by Pt. Satyadey Dube

Wriling : Translated: "The Encyclopedia of Social work In India" from English into Marathi.

Published a book of poems in Marathi "Tihai".

Wrote a Monograph Pt. Krishnarao Shankar Pandit, published by Madhya Pradesh Kala Parishad in Hindi and by Popular Prakashan, Bombay, in English

Professional Experience as a musician

Major Public Concerts : Have been performing since 1979 with concerts in Bombay, Pune, Ahmedabad, Calcutta, Madras, Bangalore, Trivendram, Delhi, Hydrabad, Jaipur, Gwalior and Bhopal and other cities of India.

Creative Experiments : Worked and presented "Samantar"?a comparative program of Hindustani and Carnatic music in collaboration with the Karnatic singer Ms. Aruna Sayeeram

Kabir, a concert presentation of the poetry of the great Indian Bhakti saint

Meera a concert presentation of the poetry of the great Indian Bhakti saint

Marathi Khayal a concert presentation of Khayal compositions in Marathi

Sahajobai a concert presentation of the compositions of Sahajobai

Music Recording Releases Audiocassette:  'Voice of Tradition' of classical music released by Swallow Music, Calcutta

Compact disc of classical music by Saydisc, London

Audiocassette 'Colours of Khayal' of classical music released by N A Classicals, Bombay

Compact disc by released by Macara, Paris

Audiocassette and CD on Kabir released by NA Classicals and BMG, Crescendo Bombay?Vol. 1 and 11

Audiocassette of songs of Sahajobai for Osho Ashram

Audiocassette of songs of Meera by released by NA Classicals and Crescendo

Media	Radio
	Regular performances on All India Radio
	Television
	Performed on DoorDarshan, Star Plus and Music Asia.
	Filor, video and audio-?visuals
	Singing for films
	Khayal Gatha directed by Kumar Shahni which has won several
	National and International awards
	Lasyw directed by Anoop Singh
	In the name of God directed by Anand Patwardhan which has won
	several National and International awards
	Wild Blue directed by Thierry Knauff, Belgium.
	Janmadinam directed by Suma Josson which has won several
	National and International awards
	Scoring music
	Film
	Beyond 7hese Works, a one hour film on the great Khayal musician
	Pt. Sharatchandra Arolkar. Worked on the script and musical
	content
	Video
	Scored music for the following videos
	Communalism

Brown Sugar Identity Ab Gussa Nahi lIai Mutthibhar Chawal Painter Gaitonde Anavrita.

Audio visuals: Worked on the scripts and scores music for audio-visual programs for. Astha, Bombay, UNICEF and Apana Laya

Educational and Academic work:

Teaching: Taught 'Sociology of Music' in the SNDT University and the 'History of Music' at the University of Bombay.

Conducted workshops in music for children and adults and special courses for women.

Conducted workshops on Voice Culture for students of music as well as theater

Participation in seminars: Participated in Seminars on the following themes 'Development of an Art form, Art Education, cultural Aesthetics', 'Criticism in contemporary arts', 'Cultural Dimension of National Movement', 'Tradition and modernity in Music'.

Awards and Honors and Work abroad: Recipient of a Fellowship of the Ministry of Human Resources and Development Govt. of India.

o concert tour to Europe and U.K. in October, November 1997

o Visit to Pakistan for a convention organized directed by PIPFP1) in November 1998.

Concert tours of Europe in March 99 and November 99 A concert tour of United Kingdom in Nov.' 99.

Languages :

English, Marathi, Hindi, Sanskrit and a working knowledge of French.


FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT THE ARTIST AT  neelabhagwat@yahoo.com


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