For Anoushka Shankar, there is legacy and then there is destiny. She is equally respectful of both, but bound to neither. Her ever-growing audience cannot help but acknowledge the familial roots of the young woman coaxing spellbinding spiritual sounds from her sitar, but neither can they deny that she is an innovator in her own right. Her name may have brought her to the stage for the first time as a young girl, but it is her talent and vision that have kept her there.
Schooled in the Indian classical music tradition by the greatest teacher any student could hope to have, maestro and father Ravi Shankar, Anoushka had already dazzled thousands with her accomplished musicianship by the time she had reached her teens. The younger Shankar revealed herself to be a remarkably promising sitarist, said Time Out New York magazine of the 16-year-old Anoushka in 1997, while a few years later Dubai's Gulf News Panorama noted, She has accomplished far more than many musicians would do in a lifetime.
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Most people are musicians simply because they play a certain instrument; when they play that instrument, the music appears. But Ravi--to me, he is the music; it just happens to be that he plays the Sitar. And it's like that with Anoushka. She has that quality--She is the music. --George Harrison - 1997
Ms. Shankar, sounding utterly different from her father, improvised against tablas, using aggressive geometric ideas, ramming home her improvisations; the crowd cheered her loudly, and Mr. Shankar, beaming, was as proud as Ms. Coltrane had been of her son. --The New York Times - June 16, 1998
...I am waiting for the time when I will be called Anoushka's father..