Manik Khan …
…is the youngest son of the legendary maestro, Ustad Ali Akbar Khan. His life has been steeped in the ancient tradition of North Indian classical music since birth; his childhood was spent listening to his father in countless concerts, and attending his classes at the Ali Akbar College of Music.
He initially started studying Tabla under the tutelage of Pandit Swapan Chaudhuri, but wanting to follow in the footsteps of his family, began his formal training in the Sarod with his father at the age of 13. Manik spent his formative years accompanying his father and elder brother (Alam Khan) on stage, touring for the last decade of his father’s extensive performance career.
Alongside a solo concert career, he has worked with various ensembles to present his father’s music in a way that has seldom been heard before. This includes working with Bay Area schools to bring Indian Classical Music to their youth orchestras, and collaborating with conductor Michael Morgan and the Fremont Symphony Orchestra.
Manik resides in the San Francisco Bay Area, where he continues his musical studies with his elder brother. He currently is teaching at the Ali Akbar College of Music, and is working to preserve and continue his family’s legacy – helping to keep this tradition of India’s rich cultural history alive and flourishing.
…has spent his entire life immersed in the tradition of Indian Classical Percussion. The son of Maestro Swapan Chaudhuri and a disciple of Ustad Ali Akbar Khan, Nilan received his first Tabla lesson from his father at the age of five.
Drawing inspiration from his father’s innovative and revolutionary approach to classical Tabla solo, Nilan was determined from a young age to be proficient as a soloist. He presented his first public Tabla solo at the age of eleven, at the Ali Akbar College of Music in San Rafael in the presence of Maestro Ali Akbar Khan. Within months of his first recital, sensing his passion and devotion to the art form, Nilan was accepted as a ganda bandan disciple of Khansahib’s and underwent the sacred ceremony in which the Guru ties a thread around the disciple’s hand, initiating a life long bond and blessing. Over the course of the next decade, Nilan would go on to lead the AACM youth Tabla Ensemble, performing various arrangements of his father’s compositions in ensemble format throughout the United States and India. It was during these formative years that Nilan was introduced to the world of Tabla accompaniment by Maestro Ali Akbar Khan, providing rhythmic support for his vocal and instrumental classes at the College.