Talavya

TALAVYA

Talavya – a leading example of the seamless blend of tradition and modernity – is a dynamic, Indian classical rhythm ensemble performing compositions by Guruji with a contemporary presentation. The group showcases the hidden potential of the Indian hand drums Tabla as a rhythmic and melodic instrument capable of expressing a wide range of musical experiences.

Each performance showcases the perfect synchronization of complex rhythms transitioning from rousing peaks to smooth meditative passages not usually associated with drumming. It engages the pure sonic energy of Indian traditions, the narrative possibilities of the drum, and the wide-open spaces for improvisation, creativity, and personal expression that Indian arts offer.

Talavya has collaborated with artists such as Mickey Hart (of Grateful Dead), Shakura S’Aida, Sidi Toure and Cuban Fire. As educators, the ensemble has led workshops and residencies across the world. Currently, Talavya performs a work entitled Tabla Ecstasy. Past ensemble compositions include Tabla Taandav, Tabla Triveni, Tabla Tarkhat, and Ardha Taal Chakra.

Some of the notable performances were held at locations such as the Chico World Music Festival, held in Chico, California, USA, Symphony Space, NYC, TEDx ASB Events at Mumbai, India, The INK Conference at Jaipur, India, Queens University of Charlotte, USA, Lincoln Center, NYC, The Percussive Arts Society International Convention (PASIC™) 2013 at Indianapolis, USA and numerous other locations across North America.

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Pradhanica

PRADHANICA

Pradhanica is a contemporary Kathak dance stage production composed by Guruji in collaboration with his senior disciple Jin Won, a professional Kathak dancer, choreographer and percussionist. Pradhanica (meaning a female leader) is a Kathak dance and world drums ensemble in which Guruji composed Indian rhythms for the African djembe, Spanish cajon, and Indian tabla and sitar. In particular for this production, he explores the possibilities of expressing emotions such as anger, joy, compassion and peace through rhythm and movement. The performance features Jin Won’s choreography showcased in three sections: the pure rhythmic aspect of the dance form, the expression of emotions through rhythm and movement, and a traditional Kathak dance performance along with entertaining interaction with the audience.

Some of the notable performances were held at locations such as  Manhattan Movement and Art Center, Drive East, The Festival of South Asian Music and Dance at La MaMa, Lone Tree Arts Center, Colorado, Musikfest in Bethlehem, PA, and Annual Princeton Festival at McCarter Theater in Princeton and numerous other locations across the state. 

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Rhythmic Freefall

RHYTHMIC FREEFALL

Autumn of 2018 witnessed a rhythmic phenomenon by the majestic Enfield falls in Ithaca, NY. With the very purpose of experiencing the oneness of rhythm in nature, Guruji Pandit Divyang Vakil, brought together over 100 Tabla players aged 4- 65 years from the Taalim Community to drum in unison, recreating the similarly spectacular event conceptualized by him 20 years before in Gujarat, India at the Zanzari waterfall. This musical event was the first of its kind in the United States.

It was not just the celebration of unity between rhythm and nature but also a celebration of unity among musicians and people belonging from different cultures across the world spreading the art of Tabla.

Layabandhi

LAYABANDHI

Layabandhi – Joined in Rhythm – is a unique gathering of musicians across New York City led by Guruji Pandit Divyang Vakil, aimed at providing educational experiences to the students of music, music enthusiasts, novice musicians and performers through live interactions and conversations with professionals on a regular basis.
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Creations: A Virtual Concert Series

CREATIONS: A Virtual Concert Series

Streamed Live on YouTube, this was an 8 episode virtual concert series showcasing archival videos of the various rhythmic works composed by Guruji Pandit Divyang Vakil over his expansive career spanning over 4 decades. The featured compositions from the archives included Tabla Solos and ensembles performances, Kathak presentations, Solos on Drum Kit , Korean traditional instrument Janggu and more.

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Taalim Yatra

TAALIM YATRA

Taalim Yatra – A Rhythmic Journey – is a concert series that seeks to bring high level Indian performing arts to the diverse community of Taalim School and beyond. Initiated as a monthly live event held in NJ, the pandemic urged the project to shift into a virtual presentation. Over the course of 2020, Taalim Yatra was presented multiple times with performers from around the world, culminating in a grand Percussion Festival featuring 8 professional percussionists from the United States and India performing Indian Rhythm solos on Tabla and drum set with the common training and inspiration of Guruji Pandit Divyang Vakil. It was streamed through virtual platforms to the audiences of the Taalim community.
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Gurupoornima Celebrations

GURUPOORNIMA CELEBRATIONS

Gurupoornima celebrates the sacred tradition of knowledge that flows down to the seekers since time immemorial through the sacred Guru- Parampara.

सदाशिव समारम्भां शंकराचार्य मध्यमाम् |

अस्मदाचार्य पर्यन्तां वन्दे  गुरु परम्पराम् ||

Each year on the occasion of Gurupoornima, Guruji’s students from across the world come together to express their gratitude towards Guruji while honoring the great lineage of Gurus: The Guru- parampara and nurturing the values of the sacred Guru- Shishya Parampara. The celebration observes a variety of stage performances and concerts which often consist of Solo and group presentations on Guruji’s Traditional and contemporary Tabla and Kathak compositions, percussion ensembles and more. Here are some glimpses of a few from the many gurupoornima celebrations that took place over the past decades in India and the United States.

In 2019, the Legacy Concert celebrated the 40th teaching anniversary of Guruji. The concert featured performances by his senior disciples and professional students from around the world performing on Tabla, Kathak, Western Drum Kit, Janggu and more. Of particular note were performances by legendary American drummer Will Calhoun who has long been inspired by Guruji’s unique rhythmic style; as well as Koren percussionist Prof. Kyung- Hwa You, who first adapted aspects of Indian Rhythm and  Music in her playing of the traditional Korean instrument Janggu. 

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