Only music can change a restive world

Only music can change a restive world

Tripti Mukherjee, one of the senior most disciples of Pandit Jasraj and the torch bearer of Mewati Gharana is running music schools in the USA. 

Tripti Mukherjee, one of the senior most disciples of Pandit Jasraj and the torch bearer of Mewati Gharana is running music schools in the USA.

In an exclusive conversation during her recent visit to Hyderabad, for the 44th Pandit Motiram Maniram Samaroha, puts dedication towards guru the foremost quality in the path of music .


Is there music in your family?
Not at all. I am the first generation in my family, who is into music.

What made you choose vocal music?
It was both my parent's dream. At a very tender age of four years, they knew that they wanted me to only sing. So it is because of them I was introduced to classical music and since then the journey is on. And it is because of my parents I am what I am today! My pranams and deep felt gratitude to them.

How did the decision come about to open music schools in the US?
I was travelling with my Guru Pandit Jasraj in the USA for a concert tour. In New Jersey, some people were seriously interested to have a vocal music institute as there was none in the East Coast until then.

So Guruji wanted me to start this and take care of it. It was my Guruji's 'Aagya' (order) for me. And there was no looking back after that. The school was established in the same year, in 1995 in New Jersey. This is my Guru Dakshina to him.

What difference do you see in the students, who learn in the USA and in India?
'Students' are the same everywhere. They have the same qualities. They are very hard working and dedicated in both the countries.

Is there a better support for 'Art' in terms of funding and are there more opportunities for artists to have it as a profession in the USA?
I am not sure about funding, but in terms of recognition, yes. ‘Opportunities’! We need to create them sometimes. So one has to be a little creative, to get opportunities everywhere in the world.

What are the changes that you would like to see in the policy initiatives of the Government of India with regard to 'Culture'?
Government’s initiative and funding should definitely be more. There is so much talent out there! Students who pursue music seriously should also get benefited under the same projects of Indian Government (like education, scholarships, concert tours, etc).

There should be more and more opportunities for an Indian classical music artiste, regardless where he/she is from, to spread this divine music all over the world.

Only music can change the unrest world, calm you down, make realise the purpose of life! Music on the whole and especially Indian classical music is so unique, so vast and scientific; it has so much power to make all this happen.

So I do think that Union government should take this aspect very seriously. And I am definitely ready to support this cause if given an opportunity. We should have lots of music festivals like a chain every corner of the world.

For me, it is 'Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam' (the whole world is one family). It doesn't matter if you are in India or in any other part of the world.

How does it feel to be awarded ‘Padma Shri’ for your significant contribution towards spreading classical music abroad?
In terms of acknowledgement and recognition, I can very happily say that our Government has started recognising it on really higher level, regardless of the place and country one stays because of their work. I was awarded 'Padma Shri' in the year 2015 for my contribution to Indian classical music outside of India.

I am the first one chosen for such a contribution, and it opens the door to thousands of extremely talented artistes, who are working very hard and genuinely for the cause of music.

I am honoured to be the first one on this path. This inspires all, who are not based in India to work hard. I really hope that our Government will keep recognising artistes for their talent and contribution towards the society.

What is unique about Pandit Jasraj as a ‘Guru’? There is a big family of young disciples with him. What is it that binds everyone?
As a Guru, he is unparalleled. There is no one like him! Guruji is not only just a 'Guru' for us. He is family, best friend and guide in every sphere, and every aspect of our lives. And that is the reason it binds all of us together as a family – the Mewati Family.

Any fond memories of Hyderabad?
Hyderabad is my 'Tirth' (pilgrimage). Every moment spent here is extremely precious and blessed for me.

What is your message to anyone who wants to learn classical music?
Find right Guru for yourself and dedicate, commit yourself completely at the feet of your Guru. Be focused on only working very hard on the path your Guru shows.

With your Guru's blessings, you will see the magic happening. The right time will start unfolding the fulfilment of your dreams and manifestation of rewards you deserve on its own!

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