Classical Indian music more popular abroad: Ustad Johar Ali Khan | punjab$ludhiana | Hindustan Times
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Classical Indian music more popular abroad: Ustad Johar Ali Khan

Asserting that Classical Indian music is more popular abroad than it is in our country, renowned violinist of Patiala Gharana, Ustad Johar Ali Khan, said that there is a need keep the glory alive and not let it fade away.

punjab Updated: Aug 24, 2016 14:59 IST
Aneesha Sareen
Violin exponent Ustad Johar Ali Khan performing at Partap Public School in Ludhiana on Tuesday.
Violin exponent Ustad Johar Ali Khan performing at Partap Public School in Ludhiana on Tuesday.(Gurminder Singh/HT Photo)

Asserting that Classical Indian music is more popular abroad than it is in our country, renowned violinist of Patiala Gharana, Ustad Johar Ali Khan, said that there is a need keep the glory alive and not let it fade away.

Khan was in the city on Tuesday for a concert.

“It is not that the younger generation in the country does not want to learn classical music. An interest can be developed only when they are exposed to this purest form of music. Music has changed in the country, the younger generation is attracted to modern, fast and westernised forms of music. Even then, Indian classical music has its essence. It is the soul of music which never dies. Mc Donalds may have opened its chain of fast food eateries in the country but Indians do eat biryani. Similarly, Indians won’t ever stop listening to classical music as this form is inculcated in their roots,” he said.

To keep the purest form of music alive in young minds, Johar stated there is need for the government to motivate the youth so they are naturally drawn towards learning classical music. “The educational institutes can devote an hour daily after classes for teaching classical music to their students. This will sustain the glory,” he said.

Johar Ali Khan, who had represented India at the 60 years UNESCO celebration in Paris and also represented India in the SAARC summit in Bangladesh in the past has spent four years teaching violin to students in Jakarta, Indonesia and has returned only recently.

He says 60 percent of his students were non-Indians. Khan, who achieved instant fame as he created the violin tune of the film ‘Mohabbatein’, said students from Japan, Australia, Fiji as well as Singapore learnt violin from him when he was abroad. “While the remaining 40 percent of my students abroad were Indians, I was surprised at the devotion and the popularity of Indian classical music abroad. The form of music is appreciated everywhere and the response I received was amazing,” he said.

Concert at school leaves students spell bound

Ustad Johar Ali Khan performed to a jampacked auditorium at Partap Public School on Humbran road with the function organised by Ludhiana chapter of SPICMACAY, an organisation that works towards preservation of Indian culture and heritage. The students were left mesmerised as the performance started with an ‘alaap’ following which the violinist played classical tunes. The highlight of the performance was the ‘jugalbandi’ with Johar Ali playing violin and accompanied by Sidhartha Chatterjee form Kolkata on the tabla.

Johar also performed on a host of Bollywood and patriotic tunes which sent the students into a thunderous applause. Johar Ali also played the famous violin tune of Yash Chopra’s film Mohabbatein on demands of the students. He played the tune of a classical film song “Babuji Dheere Chalna” and left everyone awestruck.

The children, though not very familiar with the instrument, loved the music produced by four strings and listened spellbound.

Johar Ali’s specialisation in the systematic elaboration of raag, melodies and innovative approach in presenting taal was obvious. To make the programme even more interesting, he played folk tunes of various states and asked the students to guess the name of the state.