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Kirana gharana

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Kirana gharana is one of the most prolific Indian classical khyal gharanas,[1] and is concerned foremost with perfect intonation of notes (swara)[citation needed].

Singing styleEdit

The central concern of the Kirana style is swara, or individual notes, in particular precise tuning and expression of notes. In the Kirana Gayaki (singing style), the individual notes (swaras) of the raga are considered not just random points in the scale but independent realms of music capable of horizontal expansion. Highly emotional pukars in the higher octaves form a part of the musical experience. Another unique feature of this gharana is the highly intricate and ornate use of the sargam taan (weaving patterns with the notations themselves) introduced by Abdul Karim Khan under influence from the Carnatic classical style.

In the late nineteenth century Abdul Karim Khan and Abdul Wahid Khan revolutionized the khayal gayaki by introducing the vilambit (a slow tempo section) to delineate the structure of the raga note by note.

Frequently performed ragas by musicians of the gharana include Todi, Lalit, Multani, Patdeep, Puriya, Marwa, Shuddha Kalyan, Darbari Kanhara, and Komal-Rishabh Asavari. Noted Marathi thespian PuLa Deshpande has pointed out that performers from the Kirana gharana are particularly fond of the Komal Re/Rishabh (or minor second in the western system) note of the classical music scale, a frequent feature of these commonly performed ragas.


In the 19th-century the Kirana gharana coalesced around Miyan Bande Ali Khan, a player of the rudra veena. The gharana's style was further developed, and established as one of the prominent styles in modern Indian classical music in the late 19th / early 20th centuries by the musicians Abdul Karim Khan and Abdul Wahid Khan.[2] Abdul Karim Khan was an extremely popular musician, and was thus highly influential in popularizing the gharana. Some trace the gharana's roots back farther to the 13th-century musician Gopal Nayak, a Hindu musician (of the dhrupad style) who later converted to Islamic Sufism and in the process assimilated the predominantly Muslim khyal musical style.[3]

The name of this school of music derives from Kirana or Kairana, a town and tehsil of Shamli District in Uttar Pradesh. It is the birthplace of Abdul Karim Khan (1872–1937), who was one of the most important musicians of this gharana and of Hindustani music in general in the twentieth century. A frequent visitor to the Court of Mysore, Abdul Karim Khan was also influenced by Carnatic music, and roots of the tradition can also be traced back to his great-grandfather Ghulam Ali and Ghulam Maula, the brother of Ghulam Ali.

Owing to the popularity of Abdul Karim Khan, most contemporary Hindustani musicians from Karnataka are exponents of Kirana gharana, and Kirana gharana in turn has absorbed many of the features of the Carnatic tradition. The culturally rich border region between Karnataka and Maharashtra is particularly well known for its association with the gharana.

The other primary master of the gharana, in the early 20th century, was Abdul Karim Khan's cousin Abdul Wahid Khan who chose to settle at Lahore, Pakistan after the 1947 Partition of British India.


Gopal Nayak
Nayak Dhondu
Nayak Bhannu
Ghulam Ali
Ghulam Maula
Utd. Bande Ali Khan
Utd. Eliahee Baksh Khan
Utd. Abdullah KhanUtd. Kale KhanUtd. Nanhe Khan
Utd. Majid Khan
Utd. Abdul Habib Khan
Utd. Abdul Karim Khan (founder)
Utd. Abdul Haq Khan
Utd. Abdul Wahid Khan
Pt. Balkrishnabuwa Kapileshwari
Pt. Sawai Gandharva
Pt. Ganpatrao Gurav
Pt. Vishwanathbuwa Jadhav
Pt. Sureshbabu ManePt. Ganpatbuwa Behere
Pt. Dasharathbuwa Muley
Smt. Hirabai Badodekar
Pt. Shankarrao Sarnaik
Pt. Pran Nath
Begum Akhtar
Pt. Sukhdev Prasad
Utd. Shakoor Khan (sarangiya)
Smt. Saraswati Rane
Master Krishnarao)
Smt. Gangubai Hangal
Utd. Hafizullah Khan
Mohammed Rafi (playback singer)
Pt. Ram Narayan (sarangiya)
Pt. Baburao Jadhav
Pt. Basavaraj Rajguru
Firoz DasturBharat Ratna Pt. Bhimsen Joshi
Roshanara BegumPt. Nivruttibuwa Sarnaik
Pt. Sangmeshwar Gurav
Pt. Rajaram Jadhav
Pt. Mani Prasad
Smt. Shakuntalaraje Jadhav
Dr. Prabha Atre
Pt. Chandrakant Kapileshwari
Smt. Krishna Hangal
Shrikant Deshpande
Pt. Madhav Gudi
Shripati Padigar
Pt. Pandurang Jadhav
Utd. Mashkoor Ali Khan
Smt. Pranati Mhatre
Pt. Parameshwar Hegde
Milind Chittal
Prasanna GudiShrinivas Joshi
Rajendra Kandalgaonkar
Pt. Kaivalya Kumar Gurav
Arati Thakur
Nachiketa YakkundiSrivani Jade
Anand Bhate
Jayateerth Mevundi
Amjad Ali Khan
Arshad Ali Khan

Prominent exponentsEdit


  1. ^ "Torch-bearers of kirana gharana, and their followers". Times of India. 26 January 2011. Retrieved 21 February 2016.
  2. ^ "Kirana gharana". ITC Sangeet Research Academy. Retrieved 21 February 2016.
  3. ^ Lavezzoli, p. 246


External linksEdit