From the beginning
My first lessons in music happened with the neighbourhood teacher Jaiswal Aunty while I was growing up in Ludhiana. Smt Usha Jaiswal was the Head of the music department in the local college and I would visit her twice a week. Every once in a while, her husband, Shri Balwant Rai Jaiswal, would visit from Jalandhar where he was stationed in Akashvani and would teach me some of his compositions, which he had written and composed under the pen-name of Paras. I also remember Jaiswal Uncle telling me he was one of the disciples of Pandit Vinayakrao Patwardhan, who in turn was one of the chief disciples of the legendary Pt Vishnu Digambar Paluskar. That was my first brush with music.
I vividly recall an occasion in my childhood where I sang alongside Punjabi music legend Gurdas Mann at a marriage function hosted by a family friend
While I started my public performances in school, my first appearance on television was as a child artiste on Jalandhar Dordarshan.
Gandharva Mahavidyalaya, Delhi
After completing my tenth standard, we moved to Delhi, where I joined Gandharva Mahavidyalaya. While there, I also had the good fortune of learning under the guidance of Shri Vinod Kumar ji, who was the younger brother of Shri Vinay Chandra Maudgalya, the Principal of Gandharva Mahavidyalaya.
I completed Visharad Pratham from Akhil Bhartiya Gandharva Mahavidyalaya Mandal in 1992 and soon after left for Jamshedpur to study Management.
Ai??Western Music College Band
While studying Economics (Hons) at Shri Ram College of Commerce, Delhi University , I was part of an all-girl Western music band as their lead vocalist, performing songs of Barbra Streisand, Smokie, Carpenters, The Mamas and the Papas, among others. We performed at many college Fests such as Lady Shri Ram College (LSR), Hansraj, Hindu College, Roorkee Engineering College, among others.
And the journey continues
I have been blessed to train in Music under eminent and large-hearted Gurus. In Mumbai, I began learning Hindustani classical and semi-classical music from Late Pandita Dr Sushila Rani Patel (doyenne of Jaipur-Atrauli Gharana). Over the last few years, I have also been under the tutelage of other accomplished Gurus – Smt Dhanashree Pandit Rai (a leading thumri exponent) and Shri Dayal Thakur.