Sikh Musicology

Visiting Scholarships


In the month of April 2014, the percussionist Parminder Singh Bhamra (Anad Conservatory, Sultanpur Lodhi) will teach pakhawaj classes to the Sikh Musicology students. 
If you wish to attend the classes, please write to: Francesca Cassio



In Fall 2011 and Spring 2012 the Sardarni Harbans Kaur Chair in Sikh Musicology invited to Hofstra University two exponents of the contemporary Sikh Music tradition as visiting scholars. The purpose was to promote the activities of the new endowed Chair among the Sikh and Hofstra communities, as well as to provide students with the opportunity to meet with performers (vocalists and instrumentalists) from the Gurbānī tradition.

Summer 2012

Lecture on “Authentic stringed instruments used in the Gurbani tradition” by Bhai Baldeep Singh

On July 15, the Sardarni Harbans Kaur Chair in Sikh Musicology,  in association with The Hemkunt Foundation and the ANAD Foundation organized a lecture on  “Authentic stringed instruments used in the Gurbani tradition” by Bhai Baldeep Singh.

Bhai Baldeep Singh descends from a long tradition of masters of the Gurbani Kirtan, and today is its thirteenth-generation exponent.  His repertoire includes masterpieces that were originally composed by the Sikh Gurus and the Bhagats. Bhai Baldeep Singh is also the prime exponent (khalifa) of the oldest school (gharana) of classical  percussion, pakhawaj/mridang playing, of Punjab known as Sultanpur Lodhi-Amritsari Baaj. Since 1987, with his research in the field he brought about the revival of musical instruments used in Gur-Sikh and Bhakti traditions by handcrafting these once-extinct instruments back to life.


Spring 2012

Parminder Singh Bhamra

In April 2012 the Sardarni Harbans Kaur Chair in Sikh Musicology invited for a visiting scholarship of a month the percussionist Parminder Singh Bhamra, currently assistant professor at Anād Conservatory (Sultan Lodhi, Punjab).

During his visit Parminder Singh Bhamra gave fourkīrtan-s (April 14, 18, and two performances on April 29), a workshop on pakhawāj (April 20, 27, May 4 ), eight classes, accompanying Dr. Cassio’s lectures in Sikh Musicology, and a radio interview on Hofstra University’s radio station, WHRU, (on April 30, 2012).
In his classes Mr. Bhamra instructed students to play pakhāwaj, and taught the following tāls: Tīvrā,TalwarāSultāl, ChartālAdha Chautāl , Tīn tāl    

Fall 2011

Dr. Gurnam Singh Rathour

In November 2011 Dr. Gurnam Singh Rathour was invited for a visiting scholarship on vocal music. Dr. Gurnam Singh is professor and founder Head of the Department of Gurmat Sangīt and Gurmat Sangīt Chair at Punjabi University of Patiala (India).

During his visit Dr. Gurnam Singh Rathour gave a concert (on November 13), two public lectures (November 8 and 22), a class for the Hofstra string orchestra (November 30) and four classes of vocal music for the students of the Sikh Musicology course

During his classes he taught rāg āsā and rāg suhī, with the accompaniment of harmonium, taus and tablā. The shabads he taught were his original compositions set on tāl keherwā and ektāl.

Parminder Singh Bhamra during a workshop at Hofstra University, Spring 2012