Dhrupad Thoughts

“Dhrupad is an experience that goes beyond the simple concept of singing and music, it is the Sublime. I started practicing Dhrupad four years ago and I met some Indian Teachers of Dagar tradition. Dhrupad vocal is an experience of no return, and Alaap is the expression of pure aesthetics of sound. Listening more and more practical, more feel the vastness of this sound soul.

- Serena, student of Indian singing at the Conservatory of Vicenza – Italy

“Dhrupad is perhaps one of the most pure forms of music I have ever encountered.  It is elegantly simple, clear, and harmonious, and yet also capable of great complexity.  Singing Dhrupad is like eating healthy food or spending time in beautiful nature or with loved ones.  It nourishes the soul, and makes life seem ever so glorious and perfect.  Since I committed to making Dhrupad a major part of my life I have noticed a much greater feeling of peace and grounding.  And I am deeply honored to study with the great Gundecha Brothers.  They are not only virtuoso performers, but master teachers as well.”

- Dr. Payton MacDonald
Associate Professor of Music, William Paterson University, Wayne, NJ, USA

“Dhrupad to me is the most soulful form of music. There is an immediate & deep connection with the Divine. The meditative aspect of the music consistently decreases stress indices both mentally & physiologically.”
- Anil Sharma

“Dhrupad is a study of the subtlest aspects of music. In order to tune into the finest nuance, the mind must become quiet and focused and the music in turn quiets and focuses the mind. In this way, Dhrupad is a meditation for both the musician and the listener.”
- Hany

“In Dhrupad singing I especially love the alap, the very slow unfolding of the notes from low to high. The beautiful alap is a meditative, spiritual, stretching of time that shows us the true heart of a raga.  On the other hand the rhythm on the pakawaj is exceptional too! Dhrupad is healing music of the soul.”
- Rose Okada

“How can I say in 2-3 lines what dhrupad means to me? I’ll try:
Dhrupad is what give my life joy and meaning. When I first came to India in 1982, I had no idea what is dhrupad. But as soon as I heard Sanyal Guruji sing Bhairaw alap, I knew that I must give up my career in Western music and learn dhrupad on my cello. And that is what I’ve been doing for the last 30 years. I know no words to express the love and gratitude I feel for my gurus ZM Dagar, ZF Dagar and Dr. Ritwik Sanyal, and the strong bond I have with my gurubhais and all those who love dhrupad!”

- Nancy Kulkarni

“For me, Dhrupad means: receiving knowledge passed down by 20 generations of the Dagar lineage; playing long alaps on Rudra Vina; making a direct connection between the source of inspiration and sound-creation.”
- Daniel Shurman

“Dhrupad  contributes to  the granularity of Indian art music.
It is spiritual and a counterweight to Khayyal which is in constant change.
It is an affirmation of the roots of a great tradition.”

- Surinder Chowdhury

“Dhrupad is some of the most profound music ever created in the world. To me, it manifests the highest unity of Vedic vibrational science, along with a rich and subtle beauty unmatched anywhere.   It is almost too perfect, and therein lies it’s magic–one can feel both human and divine at the same time.”
- Marc Rossi, Composer/Performer, Professor Berklee College of Music

Would you like to contribute 2-3  sentences on Dhrupad? Please send them in using DMIA’s contact information.  This webpage will be updated with your thoughts on Dhrupad contribution, pending approval.


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