Have you studied online at AACM

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producito
Posts: 42
Joined: Wed Oct 10, 2012 3:37 pm

Have you studied online at AACM

Postby producito » Tue Sep 06, 2016 9:22 pm

Hi friends

I've received a grant to study at Ali Akbar College of Music online for two months.
Do you know the school? and the quality of the lessons online? the level?

I think it's a great chance for me, but I need opinions.

thanks

pd: http://www.aacm.org/

CheesecakeTomek
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Joined: Fri Sep 21, 2007 6:19 pm

Re: Have you studied online at AACM

Postby CheesecakeTomek » Tue Sep 06, 2016 10:00 pm

Yes - I took their improvisation class that was being offered a year or two ago - 8 classes in total. They use an excellent live streaming platform - if you have a good internet connection then you will have great sound/video quality.

If you are taking instrumental classes, then you will likely learn from Alam Khan. I thought his instruction was clear and informative. The level of the material taught will of course depend on which class you have chosen. In the class I took, he went all the way up through some highly advanced material that was way beyond my technical capabilities, though I did understand the context and where it was all coming from, etc. So with that, you will be in good hands no matter where you are.

Congrats on the scholarship! Hope you get a lot out of it.

producito
Posts: 42
Joined: Wed Oct 10, 2012 3:37 pm

Re: Have you studied online at AACM

Postby producito » Wed Sep 07, 2016 8:09 am

thanks for your words.

And what you think about learn from a teacher with other instrument (sarod) tuned C ?
what about the technical tips and digitation? I've seen a video they sent me, and I'm not sure about the lessons

I've learned with Debasish Sanyal at Varanasi, and I'm very happy with his lessons.

:)

x.

CheesecakeTomek
Posts: 515
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Re: Have you studied online at AACM

Postby CheesecakeTomek » Wed Sep 07, 2016 3:13 pm

Again, I think it depends on the class.
The class I took was an advanced level class that assumed you have a good understanding of your instrument and its technique. Therefore the approach was sort of like Alam presenting the material on sarod and leaving us to figure out how we might do it on our own instrument. Also, since improvisation was the stressed topic, we were not necessarily copying exactly what he was doing anyways.

If it is a more introductory class, or if the material is more about exact repetition, then I would imagine that there is time taken to understand how to interpret certain things that might sound one way on sarod and another way on sitar. Plenty of people have learned/do learn sitar here, so I am sure they are familiar with how to approach this. If you end up having questions in the course, I imagine you might be able to contact Arjun Verma, who is on faculty there as a sitar player, and is a wonderful player/teacher in his own right.

In general it is not uncommon for a sitar player to learn from a sarod player - and Alam is an excellent player and teacher. I am sure you will get a lot out of it.

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nicneufeld
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Location: Kansas City, Missouri

Re: Have you studied online at AACM

Postby nicneufeld » Thu Sep 08, 2016 5:59 pm

CheesecakeTomek wrote:In general it is not uncommon for a sitar player to learn from a sarod player


There was one quite notable case to be sure! :D
Image

desh
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Joined: Tue May 29, 2007 3:04 pm

Re: Have you studied online at AACM

Postby desh » Thu Sep 08, 2016 6:35 pm

CheesecakeTomek wrote:... and Alam is an excellent player and teacher. I am sure you will get a lot out of it.


An acquaintance who is performing sitar player (who has also studied with a few well known sitarists) received a grant to study with Alam Khan for a few months at the AACM .From what he told me, CheesecakeTomek's comment is spot on. He was very impressed with learning from Alam Khan and continues to do so. He said that Alam is generous with material and is an excellent teacher.

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Kirya
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Location: Los Angeles, California, USA

Re: Have you studied online at AACM

Postby Kirya » Thu Sep 08, 2016 7:49 pm

I would also recommend the AACM classes and particularly the ones that Alam teaches. The classes I have taken with him provide years of study material as they are so densely packed with information. I did a class where he gave us so much info a year ago that I have yet to catch-up with all the Raga Sarang variations he taught.

I tune my sitar to C# so I cannot play along in real-time in class but I shift the video pitch with Transcribe after class and it works well then. If you want to play along in real time you would need to retune.

Also if you consider that both PRS and PNB had a sarod player teach them you can understand that if you are diligent, there is no loss from this and the Maihar gharana has taught mostly with a sarod playing teacher except for Annapurna Deviji. Actually they most often sing it out from what I have seen with the older generation. PNB and PRS did this more often than play it.

I have had lessons in India as well and for my teacher (who was a student of PNB) there was a substantially greater focus on improvisation. While it is somewhat difficult to really teach improvisation, the approach they took (including PNB a few times) was to provide strategies to fill an 8 beat or 16 beat space e.g. rhythmic patterns like 4-4,3-3-2 + Sam note for an 8 beat medium or fast tempo. They you start adding pauses to create variations so the 8 beat phrase can become 4-3--, 1--2,1--2,1-- + Sam Note

If you actually follow the very specific riyaz, palta pattern preparations that Alam recommends you will find that filling 8 beats or 16 beats with your own patterns is not so tough. You also discover the raga in the process as you start developing a sense when it is a "good" phrase and when it is not.
Kirya
Los Angeles, CA

producito
Posts: 42
Joined: Wed Oct 10, 2012 3:37 pm

Re: Have you studied online at AACM?

Postby producito » Thu Sep 15, 2016 11:41 am

Thanks all so much.

Finally I submitted and I start this week.
I think it's a great chance. I've received a little grant :)

What do you think about tuning sitar C ? Low tension for the strings?
I know how to retune the lessons with the video, but I can't do online lessons so.

Have I tune a sitar fixed at C ?

namaste

I will tell you my experiences

sitarist444
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Joined: Sat Sep 24, 2016 7:25 pm

Re: Have you studied online at AACM

Postby sitarist444 » Sat Sep 24, 2016 7:42 pm

I can highly recommend classes with Alam. He is a fantastic teacher and sarode player. Online classes are a great option, and if you record audio or video of yourself playing the material, he will provide feedback. Although, if you are able to ever come in person, that is the most valuable experience. There is a lot of value in learning from a sarode player...It will make you think differently about your instrument, make you listen closer, and will give you the extra challenge of making the lines sound nice that fit better on sarode.

Yes, we tune to C, and especially if you're used to playing in D, the tension will be much different. If you put a heavier string gauge on, it will minimize the difference. Or if you feel adventurous, you can retune all but the main string, and transpose. I have done both at different times. To really be fully engaged in class though, I would not continue playing in C# or D during class.

If you have a larger sitar, it will sound better in C than a smaller one.

Either way, congrats on the grant, and I think you will get a lot out of Alam's classes!


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