Book Launch and Musical Demonstration: Sarangi Style in Hindustani Music

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6:45 pm
Brunei Gallery, SOAS
Brunei Gallery Lecture Theatre
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Speaker: Nicolas Magriel

The sarangi is the main bowed instrument of Hindustani music. It has three gut melody strings that are stopped by the left-hand cuticles or the skin above the nails. Around 36 sympathetic strings give it a haunting echo. 

Due to the difficulty of its technique and to the lingering stigma of its historical association with courtesan culture, the sarangi declined in popularity throughout the twentieth century. Many sarangi players became vocalists, and some of the most influential Hindustani vocalists of the twentieth century came from the sarangi tradition. 

This beautifully illustrated book explores the unique features of the sarangi and its techniques, especially its capacity to emulate the human voice. The discussion is supplemented by around 170 online video files and 555 audio examples.