The Agra gharana is a tradition of Hindustani classical vocal music descended from the Nauhar Bani. So far, Nauhar Bani has been traced back to around 1300 AD, during the reign of Emperor Allauddin Khilji of Delhi.
The first known musician of this tradition is Nayak Gopal. The style prevalent then in the Gharana was "Dhrupad-Dhamar". Ghagghe Khudabuksh (1790–1880 AD) introduced the "Khayal" style of Gwalior Gharana into Agra gharana which Khudabaksh learnt from Natthan Paribaksh of Gwalior.
Pedagogical genealogy Edit
Ancestral Lineage Edit
|Hasan & Saiyad|
|Qadri Begum||Abbasi Begum||Safdar|
Distinguishing characteristics Edit
The gayaki (style of singing) of the Agra Gharana is a blend of khayal gayaki and dhrupad-dhamar. In training, both the khayal and dhrupad components run hand in hand and are not taught in an isolated fashion. This is obvious from the method of singing notes of the Agra Gharana which demands that the projection of voice be more forceful and voluminous than usually encountered in khayal gayaki, as well as uttering notes open and bare (without grace notes).
Most khayal performances by artists of Agra gharana commence with the nom-tom alaap, a tradition unique to the Agra gharana. Different facets of a raga are displayed with the help of bandish while the raga is elaborated using vistaar.
The gharana adopts a kind of voice production which relies on a flatter version of the vowel sound "a", which makes its music agreeable to rhythmic variations and is best suited for a deep masculine voice. Emphasis is laid on bold, full-throated and robust voice production, and singing in the lower register (mandra) is favoured. Keeping in tune with its dhrupadic origins, the singers use broad and powerful ornamentations (gamaks), extensive glides (meends) and resonant articulations of notes. As with the Gwalior gharana, the Agra singers accentuate the importance of the bandish and its methodical exposition. Singers following Faiyaz Khan's style resort to the dhrupadic nom-tom alaap before singing the bandish. The singers of this gharana are also great masters over layakari or the rhythmic component. In fact, layakari is the foundation on which the singers build the edifice of the bandish. Agra singers' tihais are eagerly awaited, as are their nifty ways of arriving at the same, by building up anticipation within the listener.
Some prominent exponents Edit
- Faiyaz Khan (1886–1950) "Prempiya"
- Abdullah Khan "Manhar Piya'
- Vilayat Hussain Khan "Pran Piya" (1895–1962)
- Khadim Hussain Khan "Sajan Piya" (1907–1993)
- Latafat Hussain Khan "Prem Das"
- Ata Hussain Khan "Ratan Piya"
- Kaale Khan "Saras Piya"
- Bashir Ahmed Khan
- Aqeel Ahmed Khan
- Wasi Ahmed Khan
- Shabbir Ahmed Khan
- Naseem Ahmed Khan
- Sharafat Hussain Khan "Prem Rang" (1930–1985)
- Yunus Hussain Khan
- Yaqoob Hussain Khan
- Yusuf Hussain Khan
- Khurshid Hussain Khan
- Shamim Ahmed Khan
- Ghulam Rasool Khan
- Anwar Hussain Khan
- Ghulam Hussain Khan Raja Miyan
- Arif Hussain
- Asif Hussain
- Shrikrishna Narayan Ratanjankar "Sujan" (1900–1974)
- Babanrao Haldankar "Raspiya" (1927–2016)
- Zohrabai (1868–1913)
- Pt. Dhrubatara Joshi- Sitar & Vocal(Premrang)--(1912-1993)
- Pt. Yashpaul "Sagun Piya" (b. 1937)
- Ramarao V. Naik (1909–1998)
- Lalith J. Rao (b. 1942)
- Sumati Mutatkar (1916–2007)
- Subhra Guha (b. 1956)
- Ustad Waseem Ahmed Khan (1988-present)
- Ustad Mohsin Ahmed Khan Niazi (1965-2020)
- Ahsan Ahmed Khan
- Mehboob Nadeem Khan
- Bonnie C. Wade (1984). "Agra gharana". Khyāl: Creativity Within North India's Classical Music Tradition. CUP Archive. pp. 101–129. ISBN 978-0-521-25659-9.
- Babanrao Haldankar; Padmaja Punde (2001). Aesthetics of Agra and Jaipur Traditions. Popular Prakashan. ISBN 978-81-7154-685-5.
- Tapasi Ghosh (2008). Pran Piya Ustad Vilayat Hussain Khan: His Life and Contribution to the World of Music. Atlantic Publishers & Dist. ISBN 978-81-269-0855-4.
- Ghosh, Tapasi (2008). Pran Piya: Ustad Vilayat Hussain Khan. India: Atlantic Publishers and Distributors. p. Appendix. ISBN 978-81-269-0855-4.
- Jeffrey Michael Grimes (2008). The Geography of Hindustani Music: The Influence of Region and Regionalism on the North Indian Classical Tradition. p. 139. ISBN 978-1-109-00342-0.