North Indian Classical Vocal

Dr. Pooja Goswami Pavan (Vocal) (visiting faculty at the School of Music, University of Minnesota, teaching courses in Indian music & culture),
Dr. Allalaghatta Pavan (tabla) (Principal Research Scientist at Honeywell Labs) Matt Rahaim (harmonium) (Asst Professor of Music at the University of Minnesota)

Dr. Pooja Goswami Pavan (Vocal)

Dr. Pooja Goswami Pavan was born in a musical family and received her early training in Hindustani (North Indian) classical music (vocal) from her father Pandit Surendra Goswami.

She received her M.Phil from the University of Delhi and completed a Ph.D. in Music in 2005, also from the University of Delhi. The subject of her Ph.D. thesis was the life and music of Pandit Amarnath, one of the prime disciples of Ustad Amir Khan – an icon in Hindustani vocal music.

Pooja is also trained in semi-classical music by the eminent vocalist Vidushi Shanti Hiranand, the reigning queen of Thumri and Ghazal (semi-classical vocal genres) and the universally acclaimed successor of the legendary vocalist, the Late Begum Akhtar. The versatility in Pooja’s repertoire is evident in her ability to sing Thumri, Dadra, Ghazal, Bhajan and various folk genres (e.g. Chaiti, Kajri, Hori) besides Khayal.

Pooja has received the prestigious National Scholarship awarded by the Ministry of Human Resources Development and Scholarships awarded by the Sahitya Kala Parishad in India. The many prestigious venues she has performed at include the India Habitat Center (New Delhi), the Sopan festival (New Delhi), Vietnam International Tourism Festival (Hanoi) and the Sankalp Music Society (Jaipur). In recent years, Dr. Goswami has composed or co-composed full-length musical scores for and performed with Pangea World Theater, Katha Dance Theater and Ananya Dance Theater’s dance and theatrical productions. She has performed widely within the USA, including performances at the University of Minnesota – Minneapolis (MN), the Indian Music Society of Minnesota (IMSOM) – Minneapolis (MN), Amherst College – Amherst (MA), East Indian Music Academy – Queens (NY), McNally Smith College of Music – St. Paul (MN), the Mabel Tainter Theater – Menomonie (WI), the Minneapolis Central Library, the Guthrie Theater, Ordway Center for Performing Arts and the O’Shaughnessy Auditorium.

Since 2006, Pooja has also been a visiting faculty at the School of Music, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, and at the Macalester College, St. Paul, teaching courses in Indian music and culture.

Dr. Allalaghatta Pavan(tabla) ((Principal Research Scientist at Honeywell Labs)

Dr. Allalaghatta Pavan is a regular figure in the Twin Cities (Minneapolis-Saint Paul, MN) music circles as an accomplished Tabla player and teacher. Pavan has trained in Tabla under several masters including Sri G. Laxmiah, Sri. Ambika Prasad Mishra, Sri. Gopal Mishra, Pandit Vijay Shankar andPandit Birju Maharaj. Presently he trains with Sri. Rajendra Nakod in Bangalore and Ustad Shabbir Nisar (son and disciple of the Late Ustad Shaik Dawood Khan) in Hyderabad. Over the years he has performed for Katha Dance Theater, Minnesota Dance Alliance, Pangea World Theater and Indian Music Society of Minnesota (IMSOM) in several productions and concerts. Pavan also appears on recordings of world/fusion music with MN based artists. Since 1999, Pavan has been providing instruction to a number of Tabla students. Among the prominent artists of Indian classical music he has performed with are Vidushi Veena Sahasrabuddhe, Pandit Vikas Kashalkar, Sri. Purbayan Chatterjee, Ustad Irshad Khan, Smt. Nirmala Rajasekar (Carnatic Veena/Vocal) and Carnatica Brothers (vocalists Shashikiran and Ganesh).

In 2002, Pavan co-composed and performed (with MN based Veena artist and vocalist, Nirmala Rajasekar), the score for Pangea World Theater’s production “Partitions”, at the Playwright’s Center in Minneapolis. In June 2006, he co-composed the score for Pangea World Theater’s follow-on play “The Partition Project” with Dr. Pooja Goswami. Pavan also performed with the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra in Dec 2006. In March 2009, Pavan and Pooja co-composed the score for Katha Dance Theater’s production “Angika”, blending Hindustani music with Jazz.

A senior Technologist at Honeywell Aerospace, Pavan is an alumnus of the University of Minnesota from where he received his Ph.D in Computer Science. He has served in IMSOM as a member of the Executive Committee for several years and as President of the Society from 1997 – 2001. He continues to be very active in IMSOM and presently serves as an advisor.

Matt Rahaim (harmonium) (Asst Professor of Music at the University of Minnesota)
Matt Rahaim specializes in Indian music. His current book project focuses on the transmission of melodic knowledge through generations of Indian vocalists via hand gesture. Past projects have dealt with models of evolution, the performance of piety, and the history of the harmonium. Other research and teaching interests include American music, Middle Eastern music, early Gregorian chant notation, the politics of tuning systems, rhythmic tendencies in raga performance, Sufi-Bhakti musical syncretism, musical ethics, medical ethnomusicology, and speech melody. His research and review articles have appeared in World of Music, Yearbook for Traditional Music, Gesture, San Francisco Classical Voice, and New Perspectives on Music and Gesture. He also is the author of the article “Music” in the Brill Encyclopedia of Hinduism. Before coming to UMN, he taught Religious Studies, Music and Asian Studies at Berkeley, Stanford, and St. Olaf College.

Matt has been performing Hindustani vocal music both in India and North America since 2000. His other performance experience includes oud, Afro-Cuban drumming, simulogue, shape-note singing, experimental vocal performance, Thank-You-Play, and Javanese gamelan. He also has been playing and singing in various rock bands since childhood. In spring of 2010, he was studying oud performance and Arabic language in Damascus, Syria, funded by an ACM-Mellon Post-Doctoral fellowship.

Matt’s music guru is Vikas Kashalkar of Pune, India. He studied at Wesleyan University (BA, 2000) and UC Berkeley (PhD, 2009). His mentors in scholarship have included Bonnie Wade, Eve Sweetser, Richard Crocker, Ben Brinner, Linda Hess, and Jon Barlow.