An accomplished Rudraveena and Sitar artist from Khandarbani Gharana. She was born and brought up in Sirsi – a small town in Karnataka’s Uttar Kannada district. She pursued her learning in Music from the very young age of 16 and completed her Master's in Music from Karnataka University Dharwad.
Training under the able guidance of Dr. Bindumadhav Pathak & Indudhar Nirody. Rudraveena maestro Late Ustad Asad Ali Khan accepted her as his only female Rudra Veena disciple. Under his graceful discipline, she rose to newer heights of understanding the Dhrupad style and the intensity of devotion through the Rudra Veena.
Jyoti Hegde has been actively performing on various stages all over India and recently around the world. She is sought after for being a rare female artist who is accomplished in both Sitar and Rudra Veena. She has been featured in various media publications and documentaries in the last decade and is known for her simplicity. She has been a guest speaker for various academic institutions and has students of all levels learning from various parts of the world.
Jyoti Hegde has won prestigious awards for her performance which include the Naada Nidhi Award, Kala Chetana, and Dhrupadmani. She has also won various competitions across India like Karavali Utsav, AIR competition, etc. She is currently sought after internationally, and her performances take her to many different countries.
Simple Humility, depth of care, compassion, and generosity are the qualities that come through upon meeting the woman virtuoso Rudraveena player Vidushi Jyoti Hegde. Her journey to learning the rarest of Instruments RudraVeena tells a story of grit, courage, perseverance and love for her art. Jyoti was born and brought up in Sirsi a small village of Uttara Kannada (Karnataka) in a family of landowners and agriculturists. It was at the age of 16 years that she started her first encounter with music when she decided to take up training in sitar as a university subject. Training under the able guidance of her first teacher Pandit Late Bindu Madhav Pathak. Initially learning the sitar she by a fateful chance saw a workshop lecture by her Guru about the RudraVeena. From there on there was no looking back as she deeply realized that this was the only instrument that was truest to her artistic nature and ability.
The Rudraveena was an instrument surrounded by much superstition and folklore about the many difficulties faced by its practitioners and absolutely no woman was ever allowed in those patriarchal times to even touch it, let alone play it. So it was by passing through the fire of many hurdles, superstitions, immense difficulties and opposition that Jyotiji finally managed to move ahead persevering and unflinching in her one-minded pursuit, to fully love and cherish the RudraVeena. She trained under Dr Bindumadhav Pathak for nearly 15 years simultaneously mastering the sitar as well. She then continued her training further in the Dhrupad style with Pandit Indudhar Nirody for several years.
It was not long before she was accepted by the master of masters, of Rudraveena, Late Ustad Asad Ali Khan as a disciple. Her acceptance as a student by Ustadji was a trial by the fire itself. Ustadji lived and taught in Delhi while Jyoti is a resident of far of place Sirsi in Karnataka. How the Guru and Shishya managed to conquer geography to transfer this most precious knowledge and skill is a miracle in itself. Facing many hurdles of travel, time, and family responsibilities she managed to pursue her learning over several years until the untimely demise of Ustadji.
Jyoti has passed many milestones of achievements along this long and arduous journey and collected some gems of accolades, degrees, performances and awards. She is a Grade A artist of RudraVeena and Sitar with All India Radio and is regularly sought after for performances around India and now the world.
- Monica Singh Sangwan