featuring Rita Sahai
Recital Hall, Ann E. Pitzer Center
Naari Swaram—A soulful, inspirational concert using ragas by female composers, female rasas [emotions], the power of female voices, and the feminine aspect of humankind.
UC Davis Hindustani Vocal Ensemble
Sonali Srivastava, tabla
Swasti Pandey, harmonium
Rachel Unterseher, viola
Rita Sahai is a rare Hindustani vocalist residing in the San Francisco Bay Area in the United States. Sahai’s is a soulful performer, a brilliant and prolific composer, and a venerated music teacher. She is a senior disciple of Sangeet Samrat Ustad Ali Akbar Khan sahib, and is the only vocalist and composer to carry forward the heritage of the Seni Allauddin gharana. She has served as an ambassador of India’s rich musical heritage over the three decades that she has been in the United States. Impressed by her talent and passion towards music, Khan sahib gave her the title “Gayan Alankar” (Jewel of Music).
Rita Sahai directs two choir groups: the UC Davis Hindustani Vocal Ensemble and the Vasundhara Choir. In March, 2013 Rita Sahai was inducted into The Alameda County 2013 Women’s Hall of Fame, the first Indian to receive such an honor, and was publicly recognized for her contributions to Culture and Art. Her personal vision is to bring healing, peace and harmony through the universal language of music.