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Shivkumar Sharma

Shivkumar Sharma
Sharma performing in Pune, Maharashtra 17 July 2009
Background information
Born (1938-01-13) January 13, 1938
Jammu, British India (now Jammu and Kashmir, India)
Origin Jammu, India
Genres Hindustani classical music
Instruments Santoor
Years active 1955–present
Associated acts Rahul Sharma

Pandit Shivkumar Sharma (born January 13, 1938[1]) is an Indian Santoor player.[2][3] The Santoor is a folk instrument[1][4] from Jammu and kashmir.[5]


  • Early life 1
  • Career 2
  • Personal life 3
  • Awards 4
  • Discography 5
  • References 6
  • External links 7

Early life

He was born in Jammu to the singer[6][7] Uma Dutt Sharma[8] and his mother tongue is Dogri. His father started teaching him vocals and tabla when he was just five.[7] Uma Dutt Sharma did "extensive research" on the santoor, and decided that Sharma should be the first musician to play Indian classical music on the santoor. So he started learning santoor at the age of thirteen,[7] and made his father's dream come true.[1] He gave his first public performance in Bombay in 1955.


Sharma in 1988

Shivkumar Sharma is the master instrumentalist of the Santoor, after some years as a vocalist. He is credited with making the Santoor a popular Classical Instrument.[4][9] In a 1999 interview to, Shivkumar said that it was his father who decided that he should play the Santoor and that he never thought he would be choosing it when he started learning music.[7] He composed the background music for one of the scenes in Shantaram's Jhanak Jhanak Payal Baje[10] in 1956. He recorded his first solo album in 1960.[1]

In 1967, he teamed up with flautist Hariprasad Chaurasia and Brij Bhushan Kabra to produce a concept album, Call of the Valley (1967) which turned out to be one of the greatest hits in Indian Classical Music.[1][9] He has composed music for many Hindi films in collaboration with Hariprasad Chaurasia[11] starting with Silsila[10] (1980). They came to be known as the 'Shiv-Hari' music duo.[10] Some of the movies they composed music for that were big musical hits are Faasle (1985), Chandni (1989), Lamhe (1991) and Darr (1993).

Personal life

Sharma married Manorama[8][12] and has two sons.[7] His son, Rahul,[13][14] is also a Santoor Player[15][16] and they have performed together since 1996.[7] In a 1999 interview to, Shivkumar stated that he chose Rahul as his shishya because he thought he had the "gift of God".[7]


Shivkumar is the recipient of national and international awards, including an honorary citizenship of the city of Baltimore, USA, in 1985,[17] the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in 1986,[18] the Padma Shri in 1991, and the Padma Vibhushan in 2001.[19]


  • Shivkumar Sharma - Maestro's Choice, Series 1 (1967)
  • Call of the Valley, with Brij Bhushan Kabra and Hariprasad Chaurasia (1967)
  • When Time Stood Still (Live in Bombay) (1982)
  • The Glory Of Strings - Santoor (1991), T-Series
  • Raga Bhopali vol I (1993)
  • Raga Kedari vol II (1993)
  • Varshā - A Homage to the Rain Gods (1993)
  • Hundred Strings of Santoor (1994)
  • Hypnotic Santoor (1994)
  • The Pioneer of Santoor (1994)
  • Raag Bilaskhani Todi (1994)
  • World Network Series, Vol. 1: India- Raga Purya Kalyan, with Zakir Hussain (1995)
  • Santoor (Raag Rageshri) (1998)
  • Sampradaya (1999)
  • Rasdhara, with Hariprasad Chaurasia (1999)
  • The Valley Recalls - Vol.2, with Hariprasad Chaurasia (2000)
  • Ananda Bliss, with Zakir Hussain (2002)
  • Vibrant Music for Reiki (2003)
  • Sympatico (Charukeshi - Santoor)(2004)
  • The Inner Path (Kirvani - Santoor) (2004)
  • Essential Evening Chants (2007)
  • A Morning Raga Gurjari Todi (2010)
  • Shivkumar Sharma 2 - Maestro's Choice, Series 2 (2011)
  • Sangeet Sartaj (2011)
Contributing artist


  1. ^ a b c d e "A dream fulfilled". Indian Express. 2000-04-30. Retrieved 2009-02-03. 
  2. ^ "Santoor maestro Pandit Shiv Kumar Sharma in conversation on Antardhwani, the film based on his life". Indian Express. 2008-09-18. Retrieved 2009-02-07. 
  3. ^ "Santoor strains music to ears of unborn too". Indian Express. 2005-11-10. Retrieved 2009-02-07. 
  4. ^ a b "Santoor comes of age, courtesy Pandit Shivkumar Sharma". Indian Express. 2009-01-08. Retrieved 2009-02-07. 
  5. ^ "Santoor magic". The Hindu (Chennai, India). 2005-02-27. 
  6. ^ Gilbert, Andrew (2007-11-16). "Masters of the East come West".  
  7. ^ a b c d e f g "'Music is an expression of human emotions'". 1999-08-20. Retrieved 2009-02-07. 
  8. ^ a b "Note by note". The Times of India. 2002-10-13. Retrieved 2009-02-07. 
  9. ^ a b Lavezzoli, Peter (2006). The Dawn of Indian Music in the West. Continuum International Publishing Group. p. 32.  
  10. ^ a b c "Enchantment from Eden valley". Chennai, India: The Hindu. 2000-04-06. Retrieved 2009-02-15. 
  11. ^ "'I just pick up the flute and feel the urge to play'". Financial Express. 2000-02-19. Retrieved 2009-02-15. 
  12. ^ "Sultan of strings: Shivkumar Sharma". DNA. 2006-08-18. Retrieved 2009-02-07. 
  13. ^ "Santoor notes that bind: father- son ‘Jugalbandi’". 2007-07-01. Retrieved 2009-02-07. 
  14. ^ "Inner Melodies". Indian Express. 2008-07-29. Retrieved 2009-02-07. 
  15. ^ "Virasaat". 1998-03-18. Retrieved 2009-02-07. 
  16. ^ Dastur, Nicole (2006-07-03). "What's Rahul Sharma's Dalai Lama connection?". Times of India. Retrieved 2009-02-07. 
  17. ^ "Profile". India Today. Retrieved 2009-02-07. 
  18. ^ "Sangeet Natak Akademi Awards - Hindustani Music - Instrumental". Sangeet Natak Akademi. Retrieved 2009-05-13. 
  19. ^ "Padma Awards". Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (India). Retrieved 2009-05-13. 

External links

  • - Official Site
  • Shivkumar Sharma at AllMusic
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