Pandita Tripti Mukherjee, Hindustani classical vocalist par excellence and illustrious disciple of Sangeet Martand Pandit Jasraj, stands bright amongst the generation of musicians carrying the art forward from the great masters of Panditjis generation. Triptiji is blessed with a mellifluous, divine voice and has, with her tremendous passion and dedication, honed musical skills which are a seamless blend of somber and rich elements. Triptijis vocal renditions are characterized by delicate, refined and intricate qualities, yet there exists no dearth of deep reserves of power and conviction in her delivery. This balance is Triptijis unique forte.
What is perhaps more unique to Tripti Mukherjee, is her monumental and sustained commitment for the past 14 years, to connect, spread and grow Indias culture and heritage among those who do not have easy access to it. In 1991, while on a concert tour of the United States, Triptiji had an epiphany: here was a booming Indian population with high standards of performance on all fronts, but a poignant dearth of a true connection with Indian culture, heritage and roots in their purest forms. Moreover, while the Indian classical arts had found recognition in the U.S. in the form of dance or instrumental music, the pure tradition of vocal classical music was not prevalent. Almost immediately, and with hardly any resources at hand to begin this venture, Triptiji committed herself to transmit her own experience of holistic learning with her Guru, in a foreign land. She instated an institution in his very name: the Pandit Jasraj Institute for Music Research, Artistry and Appreciation - the Mewati Gurukul [www.panditjasrajinstitute.org] in New Jersey. For the first time, an institution for vocal classical music was founded in the United States. Over the last decade, this endeavour has grown to include school centers in major cities New York, New Jersey and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. This major endeavour has provided a platform of learning to over 500 aspiring students of music across the country. Therefore, as Director of the Pandit Jasraj Institute, Tripti Mukherjees most important contribution to India, is to be a stellar cultural ambassador in the United States.
Triptijis monumental effort that involved partially sacrificing her career within India, has transformed the lives of countless Indian expatriate families. Children born and raised in the U.S., who previously had no grounding in the classical arts, have obtained not only musical prowess, but also technical knowledge through study and research. As a Guru, Triptijis patience, devotion and creativity in instructing her students and providing an all-encompassing learning environment is unsurpassed. Her students demonstrate tremendous enthusiasm and zeal, and several of them have made great strides and are able to give performances on a small scale, as well as teach junior students in the school.
As the institution has flourished, Tripti Mukherjee has not become complacent for a moment. Her initiative to root Indian classical music takes on new heights every day. A few years ago, Triptiji conceived of JasRangi, a music magazine by and for students of music. Within a short time of writing and contributing to this magazine, students of all backgrounds and ages have achieved a level of proficiency and comprehension of history, theory and current cultural context that is unparalleled. JasRangi is produced quarterly, and has received great acclaim from readers within the U.S. as well as in India.
Another example of Triptijis continued dedication is her commitment to passing on the guru-shishya parampara. In annual PJIM workshops held in Pennsylvania every year, few hundred students have an opportunity to have a residency with Pandit Jasraj, Triptiji and several other senior gurus and learn music in the highest of all environments at the feet of their Gurus. This is where they learn the essence of transforming themselves from students to shishyas, a concept which is difficult to grasp in the modern day context. Triptiji firmly believes that the guru-shishya parampara stands not only for learning and shaping a way of music, but a total way of life: a perspective that deeply touches and richly informs all aspects of thought, action and world-view.
Despite her sustained commitment to being a cultural ambassador for India, Triptiji has never left behind her primary identity as a performing artiste. She carries forward a musical tradition sculpted by her several gurus: Mrs. Bharatikar Choudhary, Mr. Sunil Das, Mr. Prasun Bannerjee, Mrs. Sipra Bose, and of course Sangeet Martand Pandit Jasraj. Triptiji has been a Grade-A artiste on the All India Radio and National Television. having performed on the national programme.
Triptiji has received great acclaim for her stellar performances at the annual Pandit Motiram Pandit Maniram Sangeet Samaroh in Hyderabad, the Hari Vallabh Sangeet Samaroh in Jalandhar, the Sawai Gandharva Music Festival in Pune and the Dover Lane Music Festival in Kolkata. These are the prime Music Festivals in India. Besides consistently performing in numerous cities of India and the U.S., her concert sites have included the Carnegie Hall (New York), Tagore center (Berlin), Nairobi (Kenya), Bahrain Arts Performing Center, and Queen Elizabeth Hall (London). Triptijis major awards include the Amir Khan Memorial Award and the Pandit Jasraj Gaurav Puraskar. Tripti Mukherjees passion, devotion, faith and perseverance have brought her success she enjoys today, and she enthralls and enlightens the hearts of many across the world.
Pandit Jasraj has said of her:
Tripti's dedication to her art and her gurubhakti is unparalleled. I feel extremely fortunate to have her as my disciple. Her monumental efforts in setting up the Pandit Jasraj Institute for Music Research, Artistry and Appreciation - the Mewati Gurukul in USA and her ongoing contributions to it are a testimony to her devotion and commitment. She has further ennobled the name of the Mewati Gharana ... Her voice is soothing yet powerful and so laden with emotion, that it moves even the greatest of kalakars to tears Most of all, she is a wonderful human being an epitome of grace and modesty.
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