Profile

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Manoj Govindraj

Manoj found his calling in music early on in life. He began his formal training at the age of seven, though his initiation was even earlier when he was all of three, singing bhajans while on a pilgrimage to Shirdi. By the time he was eleven, he was learning Hindustani music professionally under the tutelage of Mrs. Vineeta Tembe. His mentors include Pandit Prabhakar Karekar, Pandit Ramesh Prem and Mrs. Geeta Prem. Manoj is the recipient of scholarship for Hindustani classical vocal music from the Center for Cultural Resources and Talent government of India (CCRT) from the year 1988 to 1995. A rank-holder and a gold medalist from Mumbai University, he completed his Master of Fine Arts in Hindustani Classical Vocal Music in 1999. He was the recipient of Pandit Bhimsen Joshi scholarship Hindustani music at post-graduate level in 1998-99. He has won several awards, the most prestigious one being the Sur Singar Samsad Award in 1995 for light vocal. Manoj teaches Hindustani classical and light music (vocal and harmonium) at the Swarras School of Music, Glen Mills Pennsylvania USA. His repertoire includes Hindustani classical (Khayal), semi-classical (Thumri, Dadra), bhajans, ghazals and film songs in Hindi, Marathiand other languages, and also Marathi Abhang, Bhavgeet and Natya Sangeet. Manoj started performing music since 1989 and has given several performances in India at places like Mumbai, Pune, Kerala and Hyderabad. From the time he moved to the US in 2004, he has performed extensively in several states including New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Delaware, Mariland, Georgea, Florida and Colorado. Manoj has conducted several lecture demonstrations on topics including “The Thaat Series” [conducted in 5 sessions, introducing Thaat System in Hindustani Music], “Music Appreciation”, “Introduction to “Hindustani Music” at Keane University, NJ and introduction of Hindustani music at the University of South Florida.