MANOHAR PUBLISHERS AND DISTRIBUTORS
|Number of Pages||358 Pages|
Many arts in traditional India were the preserve of hereditary practitioners, some of whom are still supported by Hindu temples. An example is the community of hereditary musicians (kirtankars), who still serve in the temples of the Vallabha Sampraday, a Vaishnava sect with its main centre in Nathdvara, Rajasthan. The performance of music, in the form of haveli sangit, has been a prescribed part of worship in its temples (havelis) since the sixteenth century. According to tradition, the svarups of the sampraday are entertained with music seventeen times daily. In the most important haveli, the Shri Nathji temple in Nathdvara, there are eight full-time musicians. In the other centres there are fewer musicians and music is performed less often.
This book deals with the role of music in the sampraday and with the lives of the musicians, in particular that of Pakhavaji Guru Purushottam Das and his family. It is concerned with the living tradition, and what it can tell us about the past. By revealing the context in which music was created in Nathdvara, it provides new insights into the functioning of traditional artist communities and their response to the challenges of a changing world.