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Dhrupadcoverpicture from a dhrupad cd by Uday Bhawalkar


The DAGAR-Vani

The late Ustad Zia Mohiuddin Dagar and his brother Ustad Zia Fariduddin Dagar from the 19th generation of the Dagar tradition, among the other famous Dagars.


Bade Ustad

Ustad Zia Mohiuddin Dagar became famous for the special sound of his Rudra Vina which he modified in cooperation with Murari Mohan Adhikari, a instrument maker from Kalkutta who was one of the last owner of the famous instrument workshop Kanailal & Brother. His meditative playing style which reflects his family tradition was popular especially among a growing western audience.

He used for his Been bigger gourds (Tumbar) and a thicker tube for the connecting instrument neck (Dhandhi). That made the use of stronger strings possible which together with the corresponding fine polish of the Javari produced the soft and deep sound of the Dagar Vina. Beside the needful change of the traditional playing posture Ustad Zia Mohiuddin Dagar also plucked the strings without the use of any plectrum (mizrab).
Bade Ustad

Ustad Zia Mohiuddin Dagar, fondly known as Bade Ustad, built a Gurukul at Palaspe, near Panvel. Traditionally the teaching of Dhrupad is closely tied to the ancient system of guru-shishya parampara. The students lived in the home of their Guru and devoted themselves to riyaz (practice). The lives of the students were focused on learning music and the teacher could supervise them at all times.

Bade Ustad had a deep belief in the oral tradition of learning and an understanding that music cannot be learnt through text books only.

The Gurukul continues his mission under the guidance of his wife Smt. Pramila Dagar, younger brother Ustad Zia Fariduddin Dagar (Chhote Ustad) and son Bahauddin Dagar.
The guru-shishya parampara therefore continues. As long as there is someone to continue this oral tradition, this Gayaki that is thousands of years old, will never disappear.

Chhote UstadChhote Ustad

Ustad Zia Fariduddin Dagar represents the musical tradition of a family that is believed to have preserved and nurtured Dhrupad music for the last 20 unbroken generations. He was born in Udaipur, India, where his father Ustad Ziauddin Khan Dagar was the court musician fro the Maharajah of Udaipur.

He was taught vocal and instrumental music (veena & sitar) by his father and later by his elder brother, Ustad Zia Mohiuddin Dagar.

Ustad is responsible to a great extent for popularising Dhrupad music by his numerous concerts and workshops. He has traveled and performed widely in India and abroad. In recognition of his immense contribution to the classical music of India, Ustad has been bestowed with many prestigious awards.

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Chhote Ustad

Dhrupad history & musical structure
Marianne Svasek at the Dagar Gurukul

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