Arnab Chakrabarty is one of the most skilled sarode players in the world and as a classical purist on his instrument, has few equals. A relentlessly self-improving student of music, a teacher of extraordinary ability, an instrument designer, restorer and maker of considerable skill, Arnab Chakrabarty is the complete sarode musician of his generation.
Arnab Chakrabarty grew up in Mumbai, where his father was a professor of chemistry at the Indian Institute of Technology. His tutelage commenced under the Sarod exponent Brij Narayan, disciple of his father the Sarangi maestro Pandit Ram Narayan and also Ustad Ali Akbar Khan of the Seniya Maihar Gharana. Arnab subsequently trained under Pandit Buddhadev Das Gupta of the Shahjahanpur Gharana.
At the age of 18 Arnab received a Ford Foundation scholarship, which led to a dual degree in ethnomusicology and international relations from Hampshire College in 2002. This experience exposed him to other traditions of music, and led him to experiment with new ideas in sarod construction and design, as well as musical idioms.
Arnab has had several significant concerts. He made his solo debut in 1994, and won the National Collegiate Competition for Music and Dance three years in a row between 1995 and 1997. In 1999 he performed before Dr Kofi Annan, then the United Nations Secretary General, a memorial programme for the Pakistani peace activist Eqbal Ahmed. Notable performances at home include recitals at the IMG-Britannia Young Masters’ Festival, Mumbai; the Uttarpara Music Conference, Kolkata; and concerts at the Nehru Centre and the National Centre for the Performing Arts.