Kishan Maharaj

Kishan Maharaj

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Category: Music

Kishan Maharaj Profile

  • Name:
  • Kishan Maharaj
  • Born:
  • September 3, 1923
  • Died:
  • May 4, 2008
  • Father:
  • Hari Maharaj

Kishan Maharaj Biography

Kishan Maharaj was an Indian tabla player belonging to the Banaras gharana of Hindustani classical music. Sukhwinder singh Namdhari, Pandit Nandan Mehta, Sandeep das, Himanshu Mahant, Balkrishna Iyer, Pandit Kumar Bose, Pandit Balkrishna Mahant, Arivind kumar "azad" vineet vyas, and Shubh Maharaj are among his noted disciples. For his contributions to Indian art, he was honoured with Padma Shri in 1973 and the Padma Vibhushan in 2002. He was married to Savita Devi, daughter of Siddheshwari Devi, a very famous Hindustani vocalist from Varanasi.


Kishan Maharaj was born in Kabir Chaura, Benaras in a musical family on September 3, 1923. He received initial training in tabla from his father, Hari Maharaj. After his death, Kishan was trained by his uncle Kanthe Maharaj of Banaras gharana. Kishan started performing in concerts at a younger age of only 11 years old. Within a few years, he accompanied many great vocalists of the time like Bhimsen Joshi, Ravi Shankar, Faiyaz Khan, Omkarnath Thakur, Bade Ghulam Ali Khan, Ali Akbar Khan, Vilayat Khan, Girija Devi and Sitara Devi. He used to play cross-rhythms and complex calculations, particularly in tihai patterns which made him a unique artist. He was versatile in playing tabla with any accompaniment.


Apart from accompanying vocalists in several concerts, he has also given solo performances. He has also given `Sangat` to some great dancers like Sri Shambhu Maharaj, Sitara Devi, Natraj Gopi Krishna, and Birju Maharaj. His "Tala Vadya Kacheri" with the Mridangam Vidwan, "Palghat Raghu" is remembered for his outstanding performance. He has also participated in many international concerts like Edinburgh festival and the Commonwealth Arts festival in the United Kingdom in 1965.

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Updated: January 23, 2014

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