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Shafaatullah Khan, Lafayette College’s Alan and Wendy Pesky Artist-in-Residence for 1999-2000, will present a gala concert featuring performances on sitar and tabla at 8 p.m. Saturday, April 8, at the Williams Center for the Arts.

The concert will feature a wide range of sounds within the vocabulary of Asian-Indian music: plaintive song-like ballads, electrifying glissandos, lightning-fast cascades of sound, and elegantly decorated tonal patterns, all driven by the throbbing pulse and coloration of the tabla drums.

Tickets cost $12 and may be purchased by calling the Williams Center box office at 610-330-5009.

Joining Khan in the first half of this evening’s performance is sarangi player Pandit Ramesh Mishra. Mishra started his initial intensive training from his father and acquired further knowledge from the musicians of the Benaras Gharana. He is one of the most highly sought sarangi accompanists for accomplished tabla performers. He also is a fine soloist and has several national and international CDs to his credit.

Accompanying Khan on tabla in the second half is Amod Dandavate, one of his most senior students. Dandavate has accompanied his guru in many major concerts and festivals throughout the U.S. and has played with several other musicians as well.

Khan first appeared at the Williams Center five years ago as tabla player for sitarist Nishat Khan. The younger Khan has returned to Lafayette several times since then, both as tabla player and as sitar artist, in educational programs with the college’s world music courses.

In the rich history of Indian classical music, Khan is the first known artist to have attained simultaneous excellence in performing on three different instruments — sitar, surbahar, and tabla. A scion of one of the most respected and renowned families of musicians of India, Khan represents the eighth generation in a line that can be traced over 400 years back to the golden age of the arts under the reign of the great Mughal Emperor Akbar of the 16th century.

Kahn began his career at an early age on sitar and surbahar under the tutelage of his father, Ustad Imrat Khan, who along with his brother, Ustad Vilayat Khan, have been recognized as two of the legendary maestros of the Indian subcontinent. Shafaatullah Khan later developed a passion for the tabla, studying under Ustad Ibrahim Khan, a well-known master of the most rare and ancient tabla compositions of varying regional styles.

Debuting in the King’s Lynn Festival opened by the queen of England, Kahn has since performed at many festivals and concerts around the world. He also has led lecture-demonstrations and conducted workshops at Harvard University, UCLA, Carnegie Mellon and Princeton University. At the invitation of the University of Pennsylvania, he taught in its Department of South Asian Regional Studies for three years.

Khan’s various recordings are available on Nimbus, Edelweiss, EMI, Lyrichord, Water Lily Acoustics, and several other labels. Recently, he released three CDs, produced by Dr. Deepak Chopra, in which he performed on the sitar/surbahar and accompanied himself on the tabla—a first in the history of Indian classical music.

Alan and Wendy Pesky established the Artist-in-Residence Program at Lafayette in 1986. Numerous musicians have been brought to campus for extended residencies through the program, including harpsichordist Mark Kroll, horn player Robert Routch, baritone William Sharp, composer Philip Glass, guitarists Michael Newman and Laura Oltman, pianist David Leonhart, and violinist Diane Monroe.

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