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Dervish

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Reply with quote  #1 
Greetings,

I am interested in learning Sitar. I've thought about it for quite some time, but have not really acted on it until now.

I am probably going to India this January (Manipal) for an unrelated reason. I'm wondering; is it easy to find a Sitar teacher in all parts of India? If I take lessons now as a complete neophyte (I've held a sitar once, under supervision of a player, strummed a bit), will it be difficult to transition to a new teacher?

Another Q: Do any in Hawaii teach the Sitar?

I'm sorry if these sound like confused questions; it's new ground for me, and I just want to make sure I do things properly from the beginning.
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haldamos

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Reply with quote  #2 
Hi...your questions are totally reasonable...first off though, are you in Hawaii or NY (your location is listed as NY)...
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haldamos
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Dervish

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Reply with quote  #3 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "haldamos"
Hi...your questions are totally reasonable...first off though, are you in Hawaii or NY (your location is listed as NY)...
I'm in New York. I used to live in Hawaii, and in the off-chance that I would ever go back there, I was curious as to whether or not there were instructors there (there is a nationwide list of Indian musical teacherswhich someone posted the URL for on another thread, but noted that there was not a single entry for Hawaii).
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haldamos

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Reply with quote  #4 
Check your Private Messages...if you are in the city, there options.

PH

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haldamos
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Sitarfixer

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Reply with quote  #5 
It will be verry easy to find people in India will say they are sitar teachers. Some of them actually are. I hope you come across such a rare entity. Expect to be hammered and nailed by a multitude of extortionists and opportunistic money grabbers. That the grim reality. That's the truth. If you actually go ahead with this India - sitar quest, seek out an established Pandit or Ustad who is willing to take on a newbie student. Ustad Usman Khan in Pune is such a rare gem. Many senior students are most capable of teaching you and would be your most likely and logical alternative. I think your best bet would be to dig up a qualified teacher in the New York area. Best of luck in all this.
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rex@sitar.co.za

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Reply with quote  #6 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "Sitarfixer"
I think your best bet would be to dig up a qualified teacher in the New York area. Best of luck in all this.
I agree! Unless someone on this forum can give you a very specific recommendation for a teacher in Manipal, you'll be wading into very mirky territory - probable frustration, confusion and disappointment. Some of the best teachers and performers of Indian music anywhere are living in and around New York, I'm sure someone here can help you out. Although the experience of living and learning in India is something really special, if your sole objective is to learn sitar, and you're considering it as a long-term commitment, you're almost certainly better off learning in the US. Find a good teacher and stick with him/her.

Just a thought: is there a university in Manipal with a music dept. you could contact? They might be able to put you in touch with someone reliable.

Good luck!

- Rex
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Dervish

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Posts: 24
Reply with quote  #7 
Thanks for the advice, everybody.

I will be going to Manipal for University -- I wanted Sitar to be a hobby for whatever free time I have remaining. I will be sure to be very careful if/when I go, and carefully selecting a proper teacher. It is a university town, so I will try and utilize reputable sources at all times.
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coyootie

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Reply with quote  #8 
my 2 cents worth- the Ali Akbar College in San Rafael is probably one of the best places to study, You will avoid the inevitable ripoffs and meat grinder experiences that you'll experience in India unless you find a really good teacher there..........! my veena teacher in Madras ripped me off handily ,after I thought all starry- eyed that he would impart moksha through sangeet yoga etc.
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Dervish

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Quote:
Originally Posted by "coyootie"
my veena teacher in Madras ripped me off handily ,after I thought all starry- eyed that he would impart moksha through sangeet yoga etc.
I was very interested by what you said.

Do a lot of Sitar teachers try to do a religious thing on the side and promise moksha, etc? Or am I reading what you said wrong?
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jaan e kharabat

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Reply with quote  #10 
Don't worry Dervish, an atheist seeking moksha probably deserves it.
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If there are just ''six tones'' in an octave [sic] then why have frets for tones that don't exist?
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Anonymous

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Reply with quote  #11 
It's a good idea to take some lessons before going - so you will posess enough vivek (discernment) to know the difference between and Ustad and a Bekar-wallah (fake). Prasanna Kumar is in NYC and he is a 30 year student of Manilal Nag (Vishnupur Gharana), as well as a 25 year student of Swapan Chauduri. He takes beginner students and is the personifcation of patience.
You can PM me for his contact info if interested.
Cheers,
Keshav
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coyootie

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Reply with quote  #12 
you would definitely want to avoid self righteous soi-disant sufis in Oz also if you'd like to learn sitar.They seem to be unable to drop grievances, sort of like pit bulls when they bite something.
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jaan e kharabat

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Reply with quote  #13 
You may at all cost, want to avoid anyone who's idea of 'enlightenment' is staring in awe at a master's sarod!


P.S. I don't have any grievances, just find your little bouts of religiosity amusing.

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If there are just ''six tones'' in an octave [sic] then why have frets for tones that don't exist?
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