Jyoti Thakar (b.1956) is a sixth-generation sitar player. Her paternal family, the Ashtewales, hail from the city of Ujjain in central India. As aristocratic disciples, the Ashtewales learned both sitar and bīn, an ancestor of the sitar, from leading court musicians of the nineteenth century, including Bande Ali Khan. Jyoti retains the bīn-influenced style of her forefathers, which she first learned from her father, Shri Vasudev Rao Ashtewale. Her other musical mentors have included Dr. K.G. and Shri N.G. Gadgil, disciples of her great grandfather; Pandit Dinkar Kaikini, Agra gharana vocalist; Pandit Ram Narayan, sarangi soloist; and Pandit Suresh Talwalkar, one of the world’s leading performers of the tabla.
Those interested in studying with Jyoti should contact her directly. Please provide details regarding musical experience, interests, and what you hope to achieve. Persons of all ages, levels of experience, ability, and places of residence are welcome, provided that they practice!