Shivprasad Kotagal

Shivprasad Kotagal, was born in Nagpur, central India and raised in Baroda, a prominent cultural center for art and music in western India since the early 18th century. Hailing from families of avid practitioners and aficionados of classical Hindustani and Carnatic music, his parents recognized his gifted talents in rhythm and at the tender age of nine and put him under the tutelage of Shri Anil Gadgil. Within about a year he had started performing on stage and went on to win many school and cultural competitions.

Encouraged by his high-school music teacher, Shri Mukund Gaekwad, Shivprasad sought deeper proficiency in the Tabla and his quest led him to Shri Madhukar Gurav, a renowned exponent of the Ajrada Gharana and the-then head of the Department of Instruments at the Baroda Music College. This association helped Shivprasad assimilate the rich repertoire and subtleties of the Ajrada style's compositions marked by their exquisite rhythmic melody, complicated phrasing, and prominent use of the Bayan, the larger base drum often with a metallic finish.

In 2000, Shivprasad moved to the U.S. but continued pursuing his passion for the tabla by training under Pandit K. Prashant and his celebrated virtuoso father, Pandit K. Paramjyoti, disciple of Ustad Amir Hussain Khan of the Farukhabad Gharana. The father-son duo helped Shivprasad amplify his repertoire with the Farukhabad style known for its use of the ring finger and stress on sonority in addition to generous use of the Bayan. Shivprasad continues to train with Shri Paramjyoti and leading Tabla Maestro Shri Biplab Bhattacharya from Kolkata.

Shivprasad has charmed audiences with his sheer technical brilliance, deep sensitivity, and, most importantly, unyielding passion for playing Tabla built on years of training in two different but equally distinguished styles. An acclaimed musician who enhances the art of Tabla and accentuates vocalists and instrumentalists, Shivprasad’s performances - solo or accompanying leading artists - have enthralled numerous audiences both in the USA and India and have been featured on All India Radio, EBC Radio, and I-TV. Shivprasad has had the good fortune of accompanying and recording with several of the top local artists of United States like Vidushi Sanhita Nandi, Shri Mahesh Kale, Late Acharya Roop Verma and his son Arjun Verma, Shri Kinnar Seen, Shri Manoj Govindraj, Shri Hemant Kulkarni, Shri Rajesh Paranjape, Smt Mitali Bhawmik, Shri Madhav Bhatki, Shri Kedar Naphade, Shri Souryadeep Bhattacharya - to name a few and also visiting artists from India like Late Madhav Gudi, Shri Nagraj Rao Havaldar, Shri Abhiram Nanda on flute, Khan Brothers-Ut Rais Khan and Ut. Hafiz Khan. Shivprasad has also collaborated and has fusion recordings with several western classical musicians like John McDowell on piano, Steve Gorn on flute, Robert Bellamy on Cello. Shivprasad currently resides in Suwanee GA and in 2014 founded Param-Shikhar Academy of Tabla (http://www.param-shikhar.com) and continues to impart this great art form to members of the community including the younger generation.  

 

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