Chicago South Asian Arts Council hosts renowned tabla group, Talavya at the second annual Chicago South Asian Film Festival.
Pandit Divyang Vakil (known as Guruji, or “respected teacher”) is a renowned rhythm maestro, tabla guru, composer, and teacher of philosophy. Pandit Vakil is a brilliant rhythm composer. With over 30,000 classical tabla compositions to his name, he has helped shape the contemporary form of classical tabla playing. Many of his group tabla compositions include Tabla Tarkhat, Power of Tabla, and Tabla Ecstasy have been especially composed for Talavya. He is also the composer and creator of the world first female tabla ensemble Taalika, comprised of his international tabla students hailing from Canada, Korea, and the United States. He has also composed for a multitude of percussion instruments including drumkit, Korean jangu, djembe, dumbek, and more. One of his latest works is for dance and world drum ensemble Pradhanica.
His colossal experience of more than 30 years as a guru has produced innumerable professionals in the world of Indian music, including all the of artists in Talavya. Within the technical excellence, Pandit Vakil encourages each artist to find a distinctive voice, which is apparent in Talavya. Many of his students teach tabla and/or Indian percussion in countries like Australia, UK, South Korea, Canada, and more.
Pandit Vakil has developed his own pedagogy for teaching tabla, which is followed at music institutes he guides in India (Rhythm Riders Music Institute) and the United States (Taalim School of Indian Music).