Kaushiki Chakraborty

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Kaushiki Chakraborty
Performing at the Sawai Gandharva Bhimsen Mahotsav, Pune in 2013.
Performing at the Sawai Gandharva Bhimsen Mahotsav, Pune in 2013.
Background information
Born (1980-10-24) 24 October 1980 (age 41)
OriginKolkata, India
GenresHindustani classical music
Occupation(s)Hindustani Classical Vocalist

Kaushiki Chakraborty (born 24 October 1980) is an Indian classical vocalist. She attended Sangeet Research Academy, and was one of the exponents of Patiala gharana.[1][2] Her repertoire covers Khyals and semi-classical Thumris. She is the recipient 2005 BBC Radio 3 Awards for World Music in the Asia-Pacific category. She is the daughter of Hindustani classical vocalist, Ajoy Chakraborty and she has held performances with her husband, Parthasarathi Desikan.[3] In 2020, she was awarded Nari Shakti Puraskar.[4]

Early life[edit]

Chakraborty was born on 24 October 1980 in Kolkata. She is the daughter of Chandana Chakraborty and the Padma Bhushan recipient Indian classical singer, Ajoy Chakraborty. She had an interest in music from the age of two. She accompanied her father on world tours of music performances since the late 1980s. She sung her first song in public, a tarana, at age 7, at the Calcutta Rowing Club.[5]

At age ten, she started learning Indian classical music at the academy of Jnan Prakash Ghosh who was also her father's guru. Later, she joined the ITC Sangeet Research Academy from where she graduated in 2004,[6][7][8] and was also groomed by her father at his Shrutinandan school of music in Kolkata. She has not only specialized in rendering of Khyals and Thumri but she has also learned South Indian Classical music from Vidwan Balamurali Krishna from 2002.[7][8]

She completed her schooling at Patha Bhavan School, Kolkata. In 2002, she graduated from the Jogamaya Devi College, an affiliated undergraduate women's college of the University of Calcutta, in Kolkata with a first class degree in Philosophy. She also obtained a master's degree in Philosophy from Jadavpur University, Kolkata.[9][10]


Chakraborty has participated in many major concerts. Apart from rendering Khyals in her performances, she has occasionally adopted contemporary form of Indian pop music.[1] She performed at the Dover Lane Music Conference from the age of 20 and continued participating for the next 5 years. In her recitals, she presents a mature and rhythmical swing succeeded by unrestrained taans in three and-a-half octaves.[9]

In the two-day celebration in honour of vocalist Kishori Amonkar in recognition of her 60 years contribution to music held at Pune on 14 February 2011, Chakraborty rendered raga Todi. Two other artists, Kalapini Komkali, daughter and disciple of Pt. Kumar Gandharva and Nandini Bedekar of the Jaipur-Atrauli gharana, also rendered bandishes in the same raga at the same venue during the morning session. Bharat Kamat on the tabla and Suyog Kundalkar on the harmonium provided support to all three artists.[11] In the unique musical sessions organized by Mumbai's National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA), ragas in different time-cycles were presented on 18 September 2011 by three vocalists which included Kaushiki Chakraborty, Ulhas Kashalkar, and Devaki Pandit. This rendering was a departure from the normal evening concerts, and the ragas were sung in time periods appropriate to each raga, starting from early morning till evening.[12]

In the early stages of her career, in August 2003, Chakraborty gave a live performance in London which was released as the record "Pure". Her father had accompanied her on harmonium on this occasion.[1] She also performed at the ITC Sangeet Sammelan in India, the Spring Festival of Music (California), Sawai Gandharva Bhimsen Sangeet Mahotsav and Parampara Program (Los Angeles).[13] She has been acclaimed as "torchbearer of the Patiala tradition" for her musical performances.[14]

Talk show[edit]

Chakraborty hosts a weekly talk-show with singers in the entertainment channel, Ruposhi Bangla. The talk-show named "Gaan-Golpo ar Gaan" (Songs, Stories and Songs), aired on Sundays, presents music and gossip. She presents Bengali songs such as Classical, Rabindra Sangeet, Nazrulgeeti, Folk music, Toppa, Adhunik, Bangla Bands, film songs, and remixes. Her guests who have appeared on this show are Banasree Sengupta, Subhamita Banerjee, Lopamudra Mitra, Joy Sarkar, her father, Ajoy Chakraborty, as the guests.[15]

Musical group[edit]

Chakraborty has formed an exclusive women's musical group called the "Sakhi" (meaning, friend) which is a forerunner in classical music in the country to "celebrate womanhood" and as a dedication to the famous mythological and historical woman of India – Ganga, Saraswati, Durga, Lakshmi, Draupadi, Kunti, Sita, Radha and Meera. The first programme of the group was planned to be held on 20 January 2015 at Kala Mandir, Mumbai. Chakraborty was the vocalist and the other members of this group were Shaoni Talwalkar on the tabla, Mahima Upadhyay on the pakhwaj, Debopriya Chatterjee on the flute, Nandini Shankar on the violin while the Kathak dance performance was by Bhakti Deshpande. They are daughters or grand daughters or disciples of famous Hindustani musicians.[16] Chakraborty presented this musical ensemble with her group at the Carnegie Hall in October 2015; the programme was of 90 minutes duration.[6]

Awards and recognitions[edit]

Chakraborty has been the recipient of many awards. She received the Jadu Bhatta award in 1995, favourably mentioned and appreciated after her opening song at the 27th annual ITC Sangeet Sammelan in New Delhi in 1998, and received Outstanding Young Person in 2000. She received the BBC Award (2005) for outstanding achievement in music when she was 25 years old. On receiving this award she was praised "as one of the brightest emerging artists in Indian vocal music" and as critic Ken Hunt said "we are talking superlatives".[1][9][7] BBC also made a short film featuring her musical journey – which covered people and places linked with her music.[9] She has also received Sangeet Natak Academy's Ustad Bismillah Khan Puraskar 2010 for Hindustani Vocal Music,[17] and the 2013 Aditya Birla Kalakiran Puraskar.[6] she has also received "Shera Bangali Samman 2017" by ABP ANANDA

Personal life[edit]

Chakraborty married Parthasarathi Desikan, also a professional singer in Hindustani music, in 2004 and they have a son, Rishith.[14]


Chakraborty's discography includes "Footsteps," a solo debut in 1998, and "A Journey Begins" (2002). Her album "Pure" in 2004 was a record of her performance in London on 30 August 2003.[7] She has also sung a kirtan at MTV Coke Studio – Season 2 – song name – Lagi Lagi with Shantanu Moitra & Swanand Kirkire.[13] Her other popular song recordings are for movies Water, Thirumanam Enum Nikkah (2014) and Kutti Puli (2013).[18] Rituparno Ghosh had asked her father to permit Chakraborty to act in his films but he refused saying that it would interfere with her musical career.

However, she appeared in only one song sequence in the film Chitrangada which she sang herself. She has sung songs for movies, such as her first song for the film Chaplin, Teen Kanya, a Hindi song Rahoon tere peechhey for Paanch Adhyay, Gulaab Gang. About her performances she says: "But I never try to act like a 60-year-old because I’m not that. Superimposed seriousness would just be a thing of pretense, not me. I like to sit on stage and chat with my audience, not close my eyes and alienate myself."[5]


Chakraborty has released her album titled "The Best of Kaushiki Chakraborty."[19] Some of her other classical audio recordings are: Dhrupad Alap in Poorvi raga, Dhrupad in Poorvi raga, Khayal in Bageshree raga (in teen taal), Khayal in Bageshree raga (in ektaal), and Varnam in Swarashtram raga.[20]


Year Song Film Co-Singer Composer Lyricist
2020 Teri Arzoo Mein Shikara Papon Sandesh Shandilya Irshad Kamil
2018 Naanaagiya Nadhimoolamae Vishwaroopam II Kamal Haasan, Master Karthik Suresh Iyer Ghibran Kamal Haasan
2016 Kaaga Mirzya None Shankar Ehsaan Loy Gulzar
2015 Kichu Kichu Kotha Lorai Arijit Singh Indradeep Dasgupta Prasen and Srijato
2014 Thuli Thuliyay Ramanujan Ramesh Vinayakam Ramesh Vinayakam Na. Muthukumar
Jaa Urey Hrid Majharey None Mayookh Bhaumik Kaushik Ganguly
2013 Basonar Gaan Goynar Baksho None Rabindranath Tagore / Debojyoti Mishra Rabindranath Tagore / Debojyoti Mishra
Chillenra Chillenra Thirumanam Ennum Nikkah Sundar Narayana Rao Ghibran Kaathal Mathi, Munna Shauqat Ali
Hridoy Aamar Nache Re Shunyo Awnko None Rabindranath Tagore Rabindranath Tagore
Aloy Alokmoy Kore Shunyo Awnko None Rabindranath Tagore Rabindranath Tagore
Emoni Barasha Chhilo Sedin Shunyo Awnko None Kamal Dasgupta Pranab Roy
Rabso Neha Laage (Bilaval Bandish) Shunyo Awnko Ajoy Chakraborty Gautam Ghose Gautam Ghose
2012 Bhalobashi Teen Kanya None Indradeep Dasgupta Srijato
Rahoon Tere Peechhe Peechhe Paanch Adhyay None Shantanu Moitra Swanand Kirkire
2011 Paata Jhora Brishti Chaplin Shaan Indradeep Dasgupta Srijato
Phire Ja Re Mon Ja Jaani Dyakha Hawbe None Indradeep Dasgupta Srijato
2005 Vaishnava Jana To Water Ajoy Chakraborty A. R. Rahman (Arranger) Poet-Saint Narsinh Mehta

Albums appeared[edit]

  • 2002– A Journey Begins
  • 2005– Hamaaro Pranaam
  • 2005– Water
  • 2007– Rageshri
  • 2007– Pure
  • 2008– Jhanak
  • 2010– Jag Do Din Ka Mela
  • 2011– Manomay
  • 2011– Kaushiki
  • 2011– Jaani Dyakha Hawbe
  • 2012– Paanch Adhyay (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
  • 2013– Boon
  • 2013– Hanuman.com
  • 2013– Shunyo Awnko
  • 2013– Thirumanam Enum Nikkah
  • 2014– Parapaar (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
  • 2014– Gulaab Gang
  • 2014– Ramanujan
  • 2014– Sondhey Naamar Aagey (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
  • 2014– Hrid Majharey (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
  • 2015– Karvaan
  • 2015– Kadambari (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
  • 2015– Family Album (Original Motion Picture Soundtracks)
  • 2016– Mirzya
  • 2017– Kaushikis Sakhi
  • 2017– Arani Takhon (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
  • 2017– Gaayeja


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 "Kaushiki Chakraborty: Artist Biography". All Muic.com. Retrieved 15 January 2016.
  2. "Voice of Punjab is Bengali". The Tribune. Retrieved 21 July 2019.
  3. "Kaushiki Chakraborty Desikan and Partha Desikan delight Atlanta". atlantadunia.com. Retrieved 15 January 2016.
  4. "#GoodNewsOfTheDay: 15 Women honoured with Nari Shakti Puraskar by President Ram Nath Kovind on Women's Day". PINKVILLA. Retrieved 21 March 2021.
  5. 5.0 5.1 "Kaushiki's dual role". The Telegraph. Kolkota. 11 September 2012. Retrieved 15 January 2016.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 "Kaushiki Chakraborty's Sakhi:Women in Indian Music". Carnegiehall Organization. 16 October 2015. Retrieved 15 January 2016.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Lusk, Jon (2005). "Winner 2005 Kaushiki Chakraborty (India)". BBC News. Retrieved 14 January 2016.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Banerjee, Meena (29 May 2009). "Thinking of khayal in Bengal". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 11 April 2013. Retrieved 14 January 2016.
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 "The Girl with the Runaway Taan: Tehelka Magazine, Vol 7, Issue 38". Tehelka Magazine. 25 September 2010. Archived from the original on 16 February 2016. Retrieved 14 January 2016.
  10. "History of the College". Jogmayadevi College. Retrieved 14 January 2016.
  11. "The blend of three 'gharanas', a musical experience beyond words". Daily News and Analysis. 14 February 2011. Retrieved 14 January 2016.
  12. "An experience of Dawn to Dusk raags". The Indian Express. 22 September 2011. Retrieved 14 January 2016.
  13. 13.0 13.1 Mathur, Barkha (6 December 2015). "Classical vocalist Kaushiki Chakraborty to perform in city today". The Times of India. Retrieved 14 January 2016.
  14. 14.0 14.1 Biswas, Jaya. "Are Kaushiki and Parthasarathi back together?".
  15. "Gaan Golpo aar Gaan". News Time. Retrieved 14 January 2016.
  16. Chowdhury, Tathagata Ray (19 January 2015). "Kaushiki Chakraborty forms first all women's classical band, Sakhi". The Times of India. Retrieved 14 January 2016.
  17. "Ustad Bismillah Khan Yuva Puraskar 2010 Presented". Press Trust of India. Retrieved 15 January 2016.
  18. "Kaushiki Chakraborty". IMDb. Retrieved 15 January 2016.
  19. "The Best of Kaushiki Chakraborty". Retrieved 15 January 2016.
  20. "Kaushiki Chakraborty". iMusti India Pvt. Ltd. Archived from the original on 25 June 2014. Retrieved 15 January 2016.

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