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denis

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I have always wanted to know where the title for Ustad comes from and how a Sitar player would come to receive this Title. Is it given to them in an official ceremony and by whom? Who decides upon the bestowing of this title and who judges the merit of the recipiant?
So if you know then please post a reply.
dENIS.
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Joshua Feinberg

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hi denis,

good query mary, well done. :-) (lets see who gets that movie quote!! )

traditionally, the tile of ustad-for a muslim, or pandit for a hindu, is applied by the guru of the musician in question. when your guru says something along the lines of, 'you may now call your self ustad so and so,' then its official. in practicality, its a consensus thing. when the rasikas and older folk generally agree that someone is playing or singinly very nicely, with maturaty and depth, then that person will be called an ustad. and of corse theres everyone else who calls themselves it anyway :-) in the modern world of hindustani music, your not anyone if your not an ustad or pandit, therefore everyone calls themself that. im not saying they dont deserve it, but there are most definitly a few who do not. . . just last week i picked up a cd of a sitarist who was called a pandit and gave it a listen. (the cd was on my mothers desk). it was awful! the guy was a joke. he sounded like he'd be playing for a couple of months, and hadn't had a teacher. but this guy was a pandit! at least he said it on his cd. . . .

ok, thus endith my rant.

wiggle wiggle wiggle,

jf

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sim90

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Reply with quote  #3 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "Naad
the tile of ustad-for a muslim, or pandit for a hindu
So a non-muslim and non-hindu cannot be called an ustad? (in tabla)

if thats the case i dont care, i dont need a title. i dont want to be recognised i play comepletely for my interest as i have a passion for the instrument from a young age. :x
I play for myself n not for others!
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Joshua Feinberg

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hello there,

no, a non-muslim or hindu can still be a pandit or ustad. just the other day i heard pt. Samir Chatterjee refer to Steve Gorn (neither a hindu or a muslim to my knowledge) as a pandit. those words are just set up to proviede people from those two religions with viable alternatives.

best,

jf

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sim90

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OK
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denis

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Reply with quote  #6 
Thankyou Naad Das for the detailed reply to my question of Ustadship. It is awkward sometimes as an Australian without much understanding of the complex system of respect among Indian musicians. I will continue to listen with my heart and hope that everyone plays for beauty and not just self benefit.

Denis.
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jaan e kharabat

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Reply with quote  #7 
Hi all

the title Ustad is from the Persian language and can be loosely translated as master. In the Persian speaking countries and as an extension, amongst the Muslim populations of the sub-continent anyone that attains to a high standard in certain professions earn this title of respect ,ustad , by peers and the wider community at large. So for example, a university professor will be called ustad by his/her students. A master artisan, a master musician likewise, in short any profession that has some sort of pedagogy or decipleship inherent in it. How do you earn the title, well you just have to be a master in your chosen field. But to be polite, one can address any 'teacher' that you may have as ustad.

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nautchwali

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Reply with quote  #8 
Well said, jaan e kharabat. I was just writing a post about how one doesn't take the title on oneself, when some internet thing happened, and I lost it.

The other observation I have is that in ideal circumstances. the relationship between guru and shishya (disciple) and Ustad and shagrid is more that just an exchange of knowledge for tuition pyament. The true guru is as devoted to his or her disciples as they are to him or her. There is much more going on here than learning or performing music. It is ideally a life-long bond, and the disciple, even if he or she moves on for other training with another teacher/guru, will still keep in touch for Puja, Purnima, Eid, Muharam, Christmas, New Years, Birthdays etcetc.

I feel very strongly about this (fairly obvious probably, although there is no appropriate emoticon).
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