Renowned Hindustani Classical Vocalist Malini Rajurkar Passes Away at 82

The Hindustani classical music community mourns the loss of the legendary vocalist, Malini Rajurkar, whose artistry was celebrated for its profound simplicity. Rajurkar, aged 82, breathed her last in a Hyderabad hospital after a prolonged battle with age-related illnesses. Her illustrious career saw her grace the stages of India’s most prestigious music festivals, including the Gunidas Sammelan in Mumbai, Tansen Samaroh in Gwalior, Sawai Gandharva Festival in Pune, and the Shankar Lal Festival in Delhi. Notably, she was revered for her exceptional command over the Tappa and Tarana genres, while also leaving an indelible mark with her enchanting performances of Marathi natyageete.

Born in Ajmer, Rajasthan, in 1941, Malini Rajurkar’s musical journey began at the Ajmer Music College, where she was mentored by Govindrao Rajurkar and his nephew Vasantrao Rajurkar, who later became her husband. She emerged as a prominent exponent of the Gwalior gharana, showcasing her prowess in the ‘khayal’ and ‘tappa’ genres.

In the historical context of Indian classical music, it is important to note that the music tradition was unified until the 13th century AD, after which it gradually diverged into Hindustani and Carnatic styles. The Government of India officially recognizes two major classical music traditions: Carnatic, primarily found in the southern states of Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, and Telangana, with illustrious artists like M.S. Subbalakshmi. The rest of India is recognized for its Hindustani classical music tradition, where luminaries like Malini Rajurkar have made enduring contributions.