September 17, 2019

Zia Moinuddin Dagar

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ZIA MOINUDDIN DAGAR

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ZIA MOINUDDIN DAGAR

Zia Moinuddin Dagar

Zia Mohiuddin Dagar (14 March, 1929 – 28 September, 1990), popularly known as Z. M. Dagar, was a North Indian (Hindustani) classical musician, one of the 19th generation of Dagar family dhrupad musicians. He was largely responsible for the revival of the rudra vina as a solo concert instrument.

Z. M. Dagar was born in the town of Udaipur, Rajasthan and began musical study with his father, Ustad Ziauddin Khan Dagar, court musician for the Maharaj of Udaipur. He was trained both in vocals and in the rudra vina, an instrument used by vocalists to practice melodies. The vina was traditionally not played in public, but the young Zia Mohiuddin adopted it as his primary instrument, giving his first recital at age 16. Although he was discouraged by his father from experimenting with the structure of the vina, he nevertheless modified the instrument after his father’s death to better equip it for solo performance, transforming it into a larger bass instrument (sometimes called a Dagar vina): With the help of the instrument house Kanailal & Brother, he enlarged the tumbas (gourds) and dhandhi (hollow neck) to create greater resonance and to allow the notes to sustain longer and so better reproduce the techniques used in dhrupad singing. Because of these modifications, the instrument was too heavy to be held in the standard Northern posture (with one tumba on the left shoulder), so he played instead in the Southern posture, with one tumba on the ground and one on the left knee.

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