[Local events] Spring Raga singing classes

David Abel passages at rdrop.com
Wed Apr 2 16:59:19 PDT 2008

Opportunities to study North Indian classical vocal music (raga) with 
composer & singer Michael Stirling, disciple of Pandit Pran Nath and 
student of Terry Riley.

Classes at all levels, including beginner, at two locations (Amrita and 
Yoga Shala studios).

More information about the class and Michael at the end of this message.

Raga Singing Level I

Yoga Shala
3808 N. Williams

8 weeks
Mondays, June 2 to July 21
7:15 - 8:45 pm

$100 ($15 drop-in fee)

Raga Singing Level II (prior experience required)

Yoga Shala
3808 N. Williams

8 weeks
Thursdays, May 8 to June 26
7:15 - 8:45 pm

$100 ($15 drop-in fee)

Raga Singing (for all levels)

Amrita: A Sanctuary for Yoga
0110 SW Bancroft Street

8 weeks
Wednesdays, April 9 to May 28
7:15 - 8:45 pm

$120 ($15 drop-in fee)

"Reverence for sound is fundamental to Indian philosophy."

Indian classical music is one of the world’s most beautiful artistic 
resources and human accomplishments. In Indian classical tradition, the 
human voice is considered the supreme instrument of musical articulation.

Raga is a musical language that is at the heart of Hindustani classical 
music. India’s classical music today, exists as a direct descendant of 
the ancient traditions, preserved, elaborated and developed through the 
ages, and passed on orally from teacher to disciple, in the Guru-Shishya 

This class will increase your increase your knowledge and broaden your 
understanding of the general elements of North Indian Classical Music 
(raga & tala) and its ancient cultural and historical elements.

Students will sing and learn several raga scales and also compositions 
in those ragas. The rhythmic aspect of Indian classical music (tala) 
will also be examined. The class will be accompanied by tambura (the 
essential drone instrument) and tabla (a set of two small hand drums). 
The class is taught in the Kirana style of North Indian classical vocal 
music ~ which traces its history back in time over 700 years ago to the 
colorful era of the mogul kings and to the legendary saint and singer 
Gopal Nayak, who worshipped Krishna, embraced Sufism and blended these 
elements into a spiritual form expressed in the language of music.

Michael Stirling

Michael began the study of North Indian (Hindustani) classical vocal 
music study (Khayal singing of the Kirana Gharana) with Pandit Pran Nath 
(Guruji) in 1983 and subsequently traveled with him to India and became 
his disciple. After Pandit Pran Nath’s death in 1996, Michael continued 
study and practice of this celestial art form with Guruji’s senior 
American student, the highly regarded composer and performer, Terry Riley.

Mr. Stirling has accompanied Pandit Pran Nath and Mr. Riley in classes 
and concerts in America (at the Rothko Chapel in Houston, Texas) and in 
India (in New Delhi at the dhargha of Sufi Hazarat Inayat Khan) as well 
as in California (Yoga Kula & Fairfax Mosque) and Oregon (Community 
Music Center, Marylhurst University).

He has also studied and performed with Ustad Hafizullah Khan, Sri 
Karunamayee, Ustad Mashkoor Ali Khan, Lakshmi Shankar, the American 
bansuri artist Steve Gorn, tabla/esraj artist Benjy Wertheimer, tabla 
player/vocalist Rik Masterson; vocalists Gina Sala, Shanti Shivani, 
dhrupad vocalist Uday Bhalwalkar and others.

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