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A Life In Three Octaves

A Life In Three Octaves

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Gangubai was born to a family of traditional musicians in Dharwad and went on to become one of the greatest vocalists of the Hindustani classical music. ‘A Life in Three Octaves’ is an account of the life and times of this extraordinary musician who forged the highest form of art through the crucible of her circumstances.

Deepa Ganesh, Gangubai Hangal’s biographer, brings to life the historical moments which shaped Gangubai’s musical persona: the changing landscape of patronage and the arrival of the gramophone in India; the dying phase of the courtesan singing tradition and the creation of a public sphere; the rise of Marathi natyasangeet; the institution of All India Radio; and above all the Indian freedom struggle. She describes in detail Gangubai’s intimate relationships, especially those with her husband, her guru and her daughter Krishna, which were to profoundly influence her musical practice and her personality. To represent Gangubai’s life is to return time and again to her music.

Intimate, endearing and sincere, ‘A Life in Three Octaves’ presents to us the first-ever portrait of Gangubai: poised between the riches of tradition and the promise of modernity.


Tagged with:

biography / Deepa Ganesh / indian / memoirs and biographies / music / nonfiction / performing arts /