Pandit Rajan Mishra (1951-2021) & Pandit Sajan Mishra grew up in Varanasi, living, breathing, and singing the essence of this deeply spiritual Indian city situated on the bank of the holy Ganges and vibrant with the tinkle of temple bells. They received initial training from their great-uncle Bade Ramdas Mishra, a vocalist, and from their father Pandit Hanuman Prasad Mishra and uncle Pandit Gopal Prasad Mishra, both eminent sarangi players.
The family’s music represents a deeply devotional tradition stretching back three centuries. Although Pandit Rajan Mishra was four years older to Pandit Sajan Mishra, they decided to debut together and perform together on stage for life. They performed their first concert at the Sankat Mochan temple in Varanasi in a ritual called haazri which literally means 'appearance'.
The deep, brotherly and musical bond between them extended beyond stage and still remains a testimony in their families residing jointly under one roof in India. They founded Viraam, a gurukul in Uttarakhand, where the immersive style of khayal singing of the Benares gharana is taught. Pandits Rajan & Sajan Mishra have performed all over the world for more than four decades, bringing the essence of their style to global audiences.
Pandit Rajan Mishra lost his life to COVID in 2021, leaving behind a void in the world of Indian classical music that is difficult to fill.
"We belong to a 300-year-old legacy of the Benaras gharana. Our music has to have the intrinsic qualities of this ancient city...We often walk along the ghats singing to the Ganga or sipping chai from a kulhad. The river has been our constant companion; with her we have shared our dreams and woes."
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