Ustad Shujaat Khan

Profile Image

Ustad Shujaat Khan hails from the illustrious Etawah (‘Imdadkhani’) gharana alongside greats such as Ustad Imdad Khan, Ustad Imrat Khan, and Ustad Shahid Parvez. His famous father Vilayat was a highly demanding teacher: “after strumming the strings of the sitar for several exhausting hours, overnight practice that would make my fingers bleed, he felt that I wasn’t good enough. When I performed, there was always the burden of matching the sky-high expectations”.

Despite learning his father’s musical style in impressive depth, their personal bond became strained: “At the age of 17 I left home to carve my own life...rebellion is not easy to stomach. Sleeping exposed in public parks, washing utensils to fund your food, no certainty of your present or future and devoid of familial support, it is a very tough call.”

But he eventually forged his own successful career, taking his family’s innovations in gayaki ang (singing style) even further by singing in unison with his instrument. He has worked in fusion settings, soloing with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra and forming the Grammy-nominated band Ghazal with Pandit Swapan Chaudhuri on tabla and Kayhan Kalhor on Persian kamancheh.

"I can’t say I am against tradition; on the other hand I am considered an open modern man – I have never forced lifestyle choices on either of my children; my music reflects my nature and has a lot of new with the old."

Darbar believes in the power of Indian classical music to stir, thrill, and inspire. Explore our YouTube channel, or subscribe to the Darbar Concert Hall to watch extended festival performances, talk and documentaries in pristine HD and UHD quality. 

Other artists you may like

Kushal Das

Pandit Kushal Das is a leading master of both the sitar and surbahar, with a style that builds on Pandit Nikhil...

read more

Budhaditya Mukherjee

Pandit Budhaditya Mukherjee is revered for his extraordinary command of the sitar and surbahar, with many counting...

read more

Manu Seen

Pandit Manu Seen has enjoyed international recognition as one of Ustad Shahid Parvez’ senior disciples. He initially...

read more

Shahid Parvez

Musically, Ustad Shahid Parvez Khan does not compromise. He is totally dedicated to his sitar, upholding the...

read more

See Full Festival concerts from our extensive archive,
and hundreds of other exclusive performances with
Darbar Concert Hall

Download our app and watch on the go
New exclusive releases every month
Watch anytime, anywhere


Free for 3 days. Cancel anytime.
Pay £9.95/month

Follow us

Keep up to date with the latest news, events, music and musings across our social channels

YouTube latest

For hundreds more clips and shorts, vist our YT page here

Subscribe to our newsletters

Be the first to hear before events go on sale. Get the latest news and articles from Darbar