61-80 of 160 results  for:

Clear all

Article

Peng Benle

(b Wuxi, Jiangsu province, Feb 23, 1909; d April 24, 1984). Chinese Suzhou tanci ballad singer . Zhang’s career began at the age of nine as a religious ballad singer travelling with his uncle from one village to another. Reaching Hangzhou in 1921, Zhang joined the Hongqingtang Shaoxing daban troupe. Over the next five years he performed in a number of operatic and ballad genres, including Beijing opera. Zhang took Zhu Yongjun as his Suzhou pingtan (tanci) balladry teacher in 1926, improving his skills as a singer-instrumentalist in this important Chinese narrative genre.

Zhang used his knowledge of the repertory of other ballad styles to develop new pingtan texts, and began to perform in this style across Jiangsu and Zhejiang provinces. From 1929 he became a successful singer in Shanghai, his reputation increasing over the following two decades. In 1951 Zhang was assigned to the newly established Shanghai People’s Pingtan Troupe (Shanghai Shi Renmin Pingtan Gongzuotuan)....

Article

Elizabeth Forbes

(b Seoul, Nov 22, 1962). Korean soprano. She studied in Italy, making her début in 1986 at Trieste as Gilda. In 1988 she sang Thetis/Fortune in Jommelli's Fetonte at La Scala, and Barbarina at Salzburg, where she returned as Oscar (1989) and the Queen of Night (1993). In 1990 she made her US début in Chicago as the Queen of Night, a role she has subsequently sung to acclaim at Los Angeles, Florence and Covent Garden (1993), where her previous roles included Olympia (1991), Adina (L'elisir d'amore) and Elvira in I puritani (1992). Jo's repertory also embraces Zerbinetta, Sister Constance (Dialogues des Carmélites), Matilde (Elisabetta, regina d'Inghilterra), Strauss's Sophie, Amina (La sonnambula) and Countess Adèle (Le comte Ory), which she sang at Aix-en-Provence in 1995. Her pure-toned and extremely flexible coloratura soprano is used with great musicality, as she demonstrates in several Rossini recordings and her three recordings of the Queen of Night under Jordan, Solti and Östman....

Article

Bonnie C. Wade and Inderjit N. Kaur

(b Karnataka, 14 Feb 1922; d Pune, 24 Jan 2011).

North Indian (Hindustani) classical music vocalist. His attraction to vocal music from a very early age led his father to find local instructors for him. However, Joshi was inspired by recordings of the khayāl singer Abdul Karim Khan of the Kirana gharānā, and by a concert of Khan’s disciple Sawai Gandharva, and ran away from home at the age of 11 in search of a guru. Singing for sustenance, he travelled to Gwalior where he garnered the support of Hafiz Ali Khan for study at the Madhav Sangeet Vidyalaya. Leaving there after six months in search of individual rather than group tutelage, Joshi wandered from place to place and from teacher to teacher, until he reached the town of Jalandhar in Punjab, the site of the famous and oldest Indian classical music festival, Baba Harballabh Sangeet Sammelan. Here for the first time his musical training as well as board and lodging were looked after. He stayed there for one year, receiving tutelage from Mangat Ram, a blind dhrupadia, and getting ample food and exercise. At the following Harballabh festival, the Gwalior master Vinayakrao Patwardhan advised him to return home to study in Kundgol with Sawai Gandharva. After five years of traditional ...

Article

Razia Sultanova

(b Muday, Fergana Basin, Dec 12, 1947). Uzbek singer. He absorbed the ideas about Uzbek traditional vocal style elaborated by Hofez Kamildjan Ataniyazov of Khorezm and the Andijan Hofez Mamurjan Uzzakov. Jurayev studied at the Uzbek State Institute of Theatre Art (1967–72) and performed as an actor and singer in films and in the theatre. He has since devoted himself to performing at weddings, creating a unique presentation with a dramatic flavour at each wedding. He is noted for his skill in improvisation. His repertory comprises approximately 600 songs, about half of which are his own compositions; his performances include songs in a classical style setting the work of mystical medieval poets, songs influenced by the music of neighbouring countries including Afghanistan, India, Turkey and Pakistan, and modern lyrical songs, many of which have gained widespread popularity. In 1981 the Uzbek government awarded him the title of Honoured Artist of Uzbekistan, and his vocal style has been imitated by wedding singers throughout Uzbekistan....

Article

Martin Stokes

(b Bakırköy, Istanbul, 1945). Turkish popular singer and lyricist. His parents ran a theatre in Beyoğlu, Istanbul's main theatre district, providing him with an early experience of the stage which continues to mark his distinctive and theatrical vocal style. Educated at Robert College, Istanbul, he was involved with the efforts of the Turkish left to provide an alternative to European popular culture in the late 1960s and was conspicuously associated with the Anatolian Rock movement. In 1967 he joined Apaşlar, winning a national music competition run by Hürriyet (the main Turkish daily newspaper) with Emrah, whose lyrics were drawn from the Turkish aşık repertory (see Turkey, §2) and whose music owed much to the French chanson. Success in the competition provided opportunities to travel, buy equipment and record outside Turkey; Karaca worked extensively with the Werner Müller orchestra in Germany in the late 1960s. With Kardaşlar in ...

Article

Joseph Jordania

Georgian family of folksingers. Sandro Kavsadze (b Khovle, nr Kaspi, 1874; d Tbilisi, June 12, 1939) came from a family of priests with a deep knowledge of folksinging. He acquired most of the traditional Kartli-Kakhetian (eastern Georgian) repertory from his family. Later, during his studies at Gori Theological College, he perfected his repertory of eastern Georgian church songs with Simon Goglichidze. While still a student, he conducted the college choir, as well as being one of the leading voices in the first Georgian professional choir organized by Lado Agniashvili. Between 1894 and 1911 he organized and conducted choirs in Gori and Tbilisi. In 1909 he made his early recordings of eastern Georgian folksongs, including the virtuoso solo song Urmuli (‘The Bullock-Carters' Song’). In the period 1911–35 he taught Georgian traditional singing in Imereti (the central region of western Georgia). In 1935 he organized and led the eastern Georgian choir which participated in a major series of performances organized by the Soviet government in Moscow and Leningrad (St Petersburg) leading to the recording of 20 songs in ...

Article

Susannah Tarbush

(b Manchester, Aug 7, 1963). Palestinian singer, musician and musicologist. Her father came from Ya'bad, near Jenin, her mother from Nazareth, and Kilānī was born in England but brought up in Kuwait. She studied Western classical music as a child and started singing in public at an early age. After graduating in zoology from Kuwait University, she worked as a scientific assistant researcher. At the same time she built her reputation as a concert performer, at first mainly of jazz and then increasingly of Arab music. By the time Kilānī left Kuwait for London in 1989 she was a well-established performer. She has since built up an international career as a leading performer and researcher of Palestinian music. Her repertory includes traditional songs, improvisations and settings of contemporary Palestinian poetry. Through her workshops on music and dance for children, she communicates the Palestinian heritage to younger generations. She has given many concerts in Britain, and has toured North America, Europe and the Middle East. She has also worked as a performer, composer and adviser on numerous films, TV and radio programmes....

Article

Bonnie C. Wade and Inderjit N. Kaur

(b Goa, July 13, 1892; d 1977). North Indian (Hindustani) classical music vocalist. She was attracted to devotional music as a child and began her training at the age of seven with Abdul Karim Khan of the Kirana gharānā. She later studied with Barkatullah Khan, the court sitār player in Mysore and Patiala, and Bhaskar Rao Bakhle of the Agra gharānā, and, most significantly in terms of musical style, with Ustad Alladiya Khan (from 1920 to 1946), who stipulated that she should always sing with him at concerts. She remained with him until his death in 1946, when her solo career began. She inherited the style of Alladiya Khan, including melismatic tān in performances of khayāl and a preference for improvisation in Tīntāl. She also sang ṭhumrī. She was dubbed Sur śrī in 1938 by Rabindranath Tagore and was known thereafter as ‘Queen of Music’. In 1953...

Article

Bonnie C. Wade and Inderjit N. Kaur

(b Kairana, Nov 11, 1872; d Oct 27, 1937). North Indian (Hindustani) classical music vocalist. He spent his early life among families of sāraṅgī players and khayāl performers. He studied with his father, Kale Khan, a court musician at Bharatpur, and with his cousin-brother Nanne Khan, formerly a court musician at Bidar. He also learnt from the sāraṅgī playing of other members of his family.

His first position was teaching the household women at the Baroda court. He was influenced by Maharaja Sayajji Rao of Baroda who was fascinated by musical notation and by the possibility of teaching Indian music in institutions rather than through the traditional guru-śiṣya system. Abdul Karim published several books on notation. His methodical inclination led him to work with two individuals who wanted to discover the basis of scale-building in Indian music. He sang for Rao-Bahadur K.G. Deval, who published his conclusions in ...

Article

Bonnie C. Wade and Inderjit N. Kaur

(b Jodhpur, c1855; d 1946). North Indian (Hindustani) classical music vocalist. He was the originator of the Alladiya Khan gharānā of khayāl. He came from a family of Hindu-Gaud Brahmans who converted to Islam in the 18th century. Khan studied with his court-musician father, Khwaja Ahmed Khan, and an uncle (either Daulat Khan of Jodhpur or Jehangir Khan, scholar and court singer of Dagar-style dhrupad and khayāl at Uniara). However, Alladiya was inspired by the Gwalior-style khayāl singing of Mubarak Ali Khan, a court musician in Jaipur. Alladiya spent his early career in the Deccan and in Bombay; he worked at the Kolhapur court from 1914 to 1921 and thereafter lived in Bombay until his death.

When he was about 40, serving at Amleta, the prince required him to sing every morning, afternoon, and night successively for a number of days. The near-ruin of his voice meant that he could no longer emphasize ...

Article

Bonnie C. Wade and Inderjit N. Kaur

(b Kalanau, 1912; d 1974). North Indian (Hindustani) classical music vocalist. Resident most of his life in Indore, he was an exceptional self-styled Hindustani vocalist. Rather than receiving formal instruction, he grew up with the music of various artists including his father, Shamir Khan (a sāraṅgī player and court musician at Indore), the vocalists Rajab Ali Khan (a court musician at Dewas) and his nephew Amanat Khan (in Bombay), the vīṇā player Murad Khan, the vocalist Aman Ali Khan of Bhendibazaar gharānā, and particularly the Kirana gharānā vocalist Abdul Wahid Khan.

Amir Khan's improvisatory khayāl style was marked by a slow-speed ālāp-style singing, emphasizing the rāga with merukhand style progression, and with little acceleration of the tāla and rhythmic play. He made extensive use of the mellow lower register of his voice. He was unusually careful about enunciating the text, including final consonants, and he had a distinctive manner of introducing a sudden fast ornament on a pitch in a relatively reposeful melodic context as a way of indicating the approach to a melodic cadence. In ...

Article

Bonnie C. Wade and Inderjit N. Kaur

(b Lahore, c1902; d April 23, 1968). North Indian (Hindustani) classical music vocalist. He was born into a family of musicians and studied with his uncle, Kale Khan; like Kale, he remained independent without court appointment. In 1940 he achieved immediate fame with an appearance at the All-India Music Conference at Calcutta, and throughout the rest of his life he appeared in concerts and made recordings and radio broadcasts. He performed khayāl, ṭhumrī, and bhajan.

At Partition (1947), when Lahore, his ancestral home, became part of Pakistan, he became a citizen of that new country. He continued to perform in India, however, and after 1957 acquired Indian citizenship. Known as ‘bade’ because he was both ‘large’ physically and ‘great’ musically, Ghulam Ali willingly performed for general audiences to popularize the classical music of the élite. In 1962 he was designated Padma Bhushan by the Government of India and received the President's Award for Hindustani Vocal Music from the Sangeet Natak Akademi, New Delhi....

Article

Bonnie C. Wade and Inderjit N. Kaur

(Husain)

(b Agra, 1886; d Nov 5, 1950). North Indian (Hindustani) classical music vocalist. He was trained by Ghulam Abbas and his brother Kallan Khan and by Fida Husain Kotavala, his paternal uncle. Ghulam Abbas was systematic in his teaching, requiring Faiyaz to memorize a large number of melodies and to listen analytically to important contemporary musicians. According to Agra gharānā tradition, he studied dhrupad as well as khayāl. In 1906 he won his first gold medal, singing in Mysore at the Dussehra festival; from that time he cherished winning and wearing medals. In 1911 the ruler of Mysore dubbed him Aftab-i-musīqī (Urdu: ‘Sun of Music’), by which title he was known thereafter. In 1911 Faiyaz became an honoured musician at the Baroda court. Singing at the invitation of other princes, he won a musical competition in 1921, receiving from the Maharaja of Indore a large monetary prize or, according to a second account, a precious bejewelled necklace. He travelled widely and participated in music conferences arranged by the scholar Vishnu Narayan Bhatkhande. At the Lucknow conference in ...

Article

Martin Clayton

[Khān, Ghulām Razā]

(fl mid-19th century). Indian sitār player and singer. He was a musician of the ḍhāṛī class, a hereditary professional musician. His father Natthu Khan alias Ghulam Ali Khan was a musician employed by Nawab Ahmad Ali Khan of Rampur (reigned 1822–40). Ghulam Raza Khan established himself as a leading musician in the court of Nawab Wajid Ali Shah of Lucknow (reigned 1847–56), but was banished from court in 1850. He ultimately settled in Patna with his son Ali Raza, also a renowned sitār player.

He gives his name to a type of instrumental composition, the razākhānī gat, and more generally to a style of playing, the razākhānī or Purab (eastern) bāj (see also Khan, Masit). Modern razākhānī gats are normally set in the 16-beat Tīntāl, played at medium-fast or fast tempo and based on stereotypical patterns of strokes (bols) (...

Article

Amir Hassanpour and Stephen Blum

(b a Kurdish village in the Cizre region [now Turkey], 1904; d Baghdad, 1949). Kurdish singer. She was one of the few female singers in the male-dominated environment of Kurdish music. Born to a poor family, she moved to the newly created state of Syria, where she married a member of the aristocratic Bedir Khan family. Her husband restrained her from singing, and she separated from him and resettled in Iraqi Kurdistan in 1924. In the late 1930s she returned to Baghdad where European phonograph companies had created a thriving recording business. She stayed with Sit Almas Mihammad, another female singer whose home was frequented by singers, and became the second female Kurdish singer to perform on phonograph records produced in Baghdad (the first being Bahija Ibrahim Ya’qoub). Although her voice was stigmatized by some male listeners as ‘shrill’, Miryam was the first woman singer on Radio Baghdad’s Kurdish section, which began broadcasting in ...

Article

Joseph Jordania

(Nikoloz)

(b Menji, nr Senaki, Feb 15, 1905; d Tbilisi, Oct 26, 1949). Georgian traditional singer (tenor). He acquired the majority of his traditional folk repertory of his native Samegrelo (a region in western Georgia) from his family. In 1921 he was invited to sing in a choir by an influential Megrelian singer, Rema Shelegia. In the late 1920s and early 30s he organized and led choirs at Tbilisi University and Tbilisi Agricultural University (where he also studied). From 1936 Khurtsia became a leading soloist and an artistic vice-director of the Georgian State Folksong and Dance Ensemble. With personal appearances throughout Georgia and in many republics of the then USSR, radio appearances and studio recordings, Khurtsia was regarded as the best performer of Megrelian songs. Some of his versions (such as the dance Kharira and the military song Utus lashkruli) remain very popular. He had a beautiful ‘velvet’ toned voice, a wide vocal range and a virtuoso technique....

Article

Abdul-Wahab Madadi and John Baily

(b Kabul, 1931). Afghan singer and composer. He came from an upper-class family, part of the Mohammadzai (royal) clan which had previously had no involvement with music as a profession. In 1949 he gave his first broadcast as a singer. He became a schoolteacher, but resigned in 1953 and began a career at the radio station. There he occupied various staff positions as well as being employed as a singer and songwriter. He received some training in singing from Ustād Ghulām Husein (father of Ustād Sarāhang) in the context of music courses organized and held at the radio station. In 1965 he studied thumri and ghazal singing with Ustad Salāmat Ali Khān in Pakistan.

Khyāl became one of Afghanistan's most celebrated singers and composers of popular songs for radio broadcasting. As a songwriter he was prolific, and he won many prizes for his singing and compositions. He had many students; he coached them and wrote songs for them to record for Radio Afghanistan. The most famous were the women singers Mahwash, Jhila and Nahid, and the male singer Rahīm-e Ghafārī. In ...

Article

Alma Kunanbayeva

(b Erbol [now in Kokchetav province], 1831; d 1894). Kazakh traditional composer and singer. He was born to the family of Turlybai and began composing songs at the age of ten. He belonged to a special category of artists in Kazakh society known as sal and seri, masters of the art of song who usually functioned as part of a group which included those skilled in wrestling and horse-racing, dömbra players, storytellers, jewellers and masters of wit. Birjan was a talented aqyn (poet-singer) and took part in numerous aitys (contests), the most famous of which was with Sara Tastanbekova. He travelled throughout Kazakhstan and became well known. Many of his songs became widely popular, notably Birjan-sal (an autobiographical song), Leyailam-shrak (a girl's name meaning ‘my dear flame’) and Zhonïp aldï (literally ‘polished’, ‘shaved’). He also composed two songs based on verses by Abai Kunanbaev, in whose household he was on occasion a guest. Birjan's songs were characterized by a number of features including melodic originality, indissoluble unity of text and music, and the inclusion of his own name in the texts of his songs, many of which were autobiographical. Several legends concerning the creation of his songs also became well known. In ...

Article

Henry Spiller

(b Majalaya, Bandung, Indonesia, Sept 9, 1949; d Bandung, Indonesia, Aug 11, 2011). Sundanese singer. She began her career as a singer of kawih (song form; see Indonesia §V, (vii), (a); in 1968, after winning several competitions and performing regularly with an all-female gamelan degung group, she began to focus on tembang Sunda (genre of accompanied sung poetry, see Indonesia §V 1., (ii), (c)) and studied with Mang Engkos, a noted master. Her tembang credentials became firmly established when she won first prize in the Galura Sunda competition the following year. She made countless recordings, beginning in 1969; between 1971 and 1975 she recorded traditional music for Asmara Record, a pioneer in the Sundanese cassette industry. In 1975, she and her husband, composer-arranger-choreographer-producer Gugum Gumbira Tirasondjaja (b1945), established their own recording studio and label, Jugala (they divorced in 2008, but remained close). Her Jugala recordings reshaped the sound of ...

Article

Catherine Wojtanowski

(b Samakand, Tajikstan [Uzbekistan], Dec 28, 1920). Bukharan Jewish singer. From an early age, she immersed herself in Bukharan Jewish traditions, first under the influence of her father, a cantor, who died when she was six. Her original surname was changed to Kuinova in an attempt to avoid anti-Semitic persecution by the Soviet government. She began vocal lessons at the age of 14, performing first in her school choir and on Soviet radio. Renowned for her expertise in traditional music, she toured the Soviet Union widely, performed for foreign dignitaries and at state functions, and earned the award of Honored Artist of the Soviet Union. Kuinova also became an expert in shashmaqam, a traditional music of Central Asia which features texts that date from 15th century. In 1980, she immigrated to the United States, settling in Queens, New York, becoming an active member of the Bukharan Jewish musical community, and participating in the Soviet Jewish Community Cultural Initiative. She has performed in a variety of settings, often supported by two or three instrumentalists. In ...