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Inderjit Kaur

Inderjit Nilu Kaur is a musicologist specializing in the musicological and performative aspects of Sikh shabad kirtan. Her work over the last several years has focused on understanding and recovering the operative meaning of the musicology in the Guru Granth Sahib, and also studying its relationship to Hindustani music. More recently she has been exploring the music-aesthetic ideals in the Guru Granth Sahib, and their relationship to kirtan performance. She has founded the Sikh Music Heritage Institute (www.SikhMusicHeritage.org), a non-profit organization committed to research in, education on and preservation of heritage shabad kirtan. Her preservation work includes the production of a DVD of historical compositions by renowned 11th generation rāgi, late Bhai Avtar Singh. At his request, she translated into English the text of his four-volume (forthcoming) book of historical compositions. Her educational work includes founding and designing the international Sikh Youth Kirtan Competition for the Sri Hemkunt Foundation of New York, as well as directing youth kirtan ensembles in presenting heritage kirtan at gurdwaray and Sikh youth retreats. Her community service also includes serving as a judge in kirtan competitions. She has presented her research at conferences and seminars, at several universities including Oxford University and UC Berkeley, and also at several gurdwaray, community forums and youth retreats. She has published papers in journals such as Journal of Punjab Studies and Sikh Formations, and magazines such as Nishaan. Inderjit is trained in Indian classical music, and grew up singing shabad kirtan in rāg. Inderjit has a PhD in economics from UC Berkeley and has taught economics for many years, while continuing her active engagement with music. She is currently pursuing a PhD in ethnomusicology at UC Berkeley, and continuing her work on Sikh and Indian Classical musicology as Research Associate in the Music Department at UC Santa Cruz, and her service, as Advisor, Sikh and Punjabi Studies in the UCSC Humanities Division.

GraduateStudent