Jaymini Sahai is one of the most exciting artists to emerge from the new generation of UK based South Asian dance artists. Beginning her initial Kathak training in the Jaipur style at the tender age of 6, Jaymini gained her diploma in Kathak in 1995 and since then she has been performing nationally and internationally in both professional productions and community events. She undertook advanced training in the Lucknow stlye of Kathak under renowned Guru Pratap Pawar Ji. She regularly conducts school and community related dance work and has performed for Her Majesty the Queen on several occasions including Royal Academy of Arts and Harewood House in Harrogate for the Golden Jubilee celebrations.
Jaymini set up her company, “Aradhana”, to present Kathak in it’s original pure form. In addition to performing and choreographing her own productions, Jaymini is a teacher of Kathak and holds regular classes, lecture demonstrations and residencies. Jaymini has choreographed for Geraldine Connor’s spectacular production of “Carnival Messiah” which toured the UK and Trinidad and Tobago. She has also worked with Flamenco musicians and dancers to present Kathak in a new light, working seamlessly to show the similarities of the 2 styles. Jaymini has also experimented with Western Classical Music, choreographing Kathak to Beethoven’s Concerto #1 and Vivaldi’s Spring
Sanju Sahai (also known as Vishnu Sahai), is currently one of the finest and most sought after Tabla players of his generation. Belonging to the Benares Gharana (lineage) and being the 6th generation of Tabla players in the lineage, he began learning at an early age from his Guru the illustrious Pandit Sharda Sahai Ji. Being a child prodigy, he gave his first Tabla solo performance at a major festival in Benares at the tender age of 9. A phenomenal and outstanding Tabla player, he is well known for mesmerising and captivating his audience with his power, virtuosity and complete spontaneity.
His meteoric rise in popularity in the field of traditional Indian Classical music has led Sanju to regularly collaborate with different genres such as Jazz, Egyptian, Flamenco, Opera, Western Classical, hip hop, folk, blues music and the world of contemporary music and dance. This makes him an imaginative and sensitive musician, having an elegant and poignant style of his own.
He has and continues to collaborate with various artists from around the globe in both teaching and performance settings, venues including Carnegie Hall (New York), Sydney Opera House (Australia), The Royal Albert Hall, Royal Festival Hall, House of Commons and Westminster Abbey. He has also been privileged to be invited to perform for Her Majesty the Queen on 4 separate occasions and has also performed at a private function held by HRH Prince Charles at Highgrove. Sanju is an international artist and performs all over the UK, India, Europe, Middle East, USA, Australasia and the Far East.
He has accompanied many of India’s legendary musicians and dancers such as: Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia (bansuri), Pandit Shiv Kumar Sharma (santoor), Ustad Vilayat Khan Saheb, Ustaad Ustaad Shahid Parvez (sitar), Pandit Vishwa Mohan Bhatt (mohan veena), Pandit Birju Maharaj, Natraj Gopi Krishna and Smt Sitara Devi (Kathak), Ustaad Amjad Ali Khan (sarod), Pandit Jasraj, Smt Girija Devi, Pandits Rajan and Sajan Misra, Pandit Ajoy Chakraborty and Smt Veena Sahasrabuddhe (vocal) Ustaad Sultan Khan and Pandit Ramesh Misra (sarangi) to name but a few.
Kaviraj Singh is a young and upcoming talent in Indian classical music. He is the third son of Dharambir Singh (MBE), a disciple of the legendary Ustad Vilayat Khan. Born into a musical family, his musical abilities were evidently strong from a very young age.
Kaviraj has been training with Pandit Ajoy Chakraborty and Sri Harjinderpal Singh in both Vocal and Santoor. Kaviraj has been successful at many prestigious competitions, receiving 1st place at the 2006 Harballabh competition and the AMC award at London’s Croydon music festival. He has performed around the UK and Europe as a soloist and as part of Tarang, the national Indian music ensemble. He was also the youngest performer at the Darbar festival 2008 in Leicester.
Kaviraj’s ability to create peaceful yet energetic moods when performing is an important characteristic of his musical personality. He is creating a niche for himself by revisiting the ancient sufi practice of singing while playing the santoor.
Roopa Panesar is a rising star of the Indian music scene in the UK and abroad. She is considered to be one of the finest Sitarists to have emerged in the UK. She started learning Sitar at the age of seven with renowned musician and educationalist Ustad Dharambir Singh, disciple of the late Ustad Vilayat Khan. Regarded from an early age as a talent for the future she was able to benefit from support and guidance from a catalogue of Indian maestros including Ustad Shahid Parvez, Pandit Arvind Parikh, Ustad Bahauddin Dagar, Ustad Siraj Khan and Pt Ajoy Chakroborty to name a few.
Her performances have generated both excitement with audiences and respect from her peers who have recognised her outstanding ability. In recent times, she has given successful high profile concerts at The Town Hall, Birmingham where she played prior to Pt. Shiv Kumar Sharma for Darbar, The Curve Theatre, Leicester, Purcell Room, London and has also in the past performed at the House of Commons and NEC Birmingham among many other venues. She recently recorded music for the film soundtrack of ‘West is West’, the follow up to the
critically acclaimed ‘East is East’ and also performed as a guest artist at the John Lennon Tribute Concert at the Echo Arena, Liverpool.