David Trasoff Teaching


My guru, Ustad Ali Akbar Khan, was an incredibly generous teacher. He was determined that we should learn and know all of the styles of instrumental and vocal music, and with great patience he devoted endless hours to passing on to us as much of his vast knowledge and experience as we could absorb. His goal, passed to him by his renowned father, Acharya Ustad Alauddin Khan, was to transplant Hindustani music to a new home. My task now is to do all that I can to help fulfill that objective.


An accomplished teacher with over thirty years experience, David teaches the full range of styles of Hindustani classical instrumental music: dhrupad (the oldest and most pure form of the ragas), khyal (the imaginative and imrpovisatory modern style) and thumri (romantic, light classical). His students have ranged in age from 9 to over 60.

David has taught master classes, ensembles, and workshops as well as individual lessons. Specializing in stringed instruments (sarode and sitar as well as violin, guitar and others), David also teaches vocal music as a necessary supplement to learning instrumental music. A tabla student of Ustad Zakir Hussain since 1974, David teaches beginning and intermediate tabla as well.

In 2012 David became the first Western performer of Indian classical music to be appointed as the Gordhain Patel Visiting Distinguished Professor of Indian Music Studies at the University of Georgia’s Hugh Hodgson School of Music.

David served as Director of the Indian Music Ensemble at the University of California, Santa Barbara, for three years. At the California Institute of the Arts he taught Indian instrumental techniques and improvisation for western instruments, theory and composition in North Indian classical music for instrumental and vocal students, and was Co-Director of the Indian Music Ensemble under the guidance of Pandit Rajeev Taranath. He was Director of the Hindustani Music Ensemble at Pomona College for two years, and directed the Music of India program for the Center for World Music summer program in Payangan, Bali.

Lecture-demonstrations and Workshops (partial list)

CODARTS Rotterdam Conservatory of Music, Rotterdam, Netherlands

Prague Jazz Society Summer Institute, Prague, Czech Republic: Indian Theory and Improvisation for Jazz Musicians

College Music Society: Introduction to North Indian classical music for college music teachers

Young Audiences

Community Music Schools

Schools and universities throughout the United States

- Academic Research, Publications, Teaching, and Lectures -

David Trasoff - Teaching

David Trasoff - Teaching