Gauri Kavi - Biography
Gauri Kavi is a versatile and innovative singer based in Mumbai, India. As a successful playback singer, she has lent her voice to many stage productions, television serials and advertisement jingles. She has appeared in numerous live shows in India and abroad and has also sung in stage musicals. Her work has been published as music albums by eminent music companies such as T-Series and HMV.
At an early age, Gauri’s musical talent was cultivated in the rich tradition of Hindustani classical music under the guidance of her mother Mrs. Aparna Kavi, (disciple of Late. Pt. Phiroze Dastur, the doyen of Kirana Gharana) and Pt. Chandrakant Limaye of Vasantrao Gharana. Gauri received advanced education in light vocal music from the well known music composer and guru Pt. Yashwant Deo for more than four years, and has subsequently found valuable guidance from renowned music directors like Ashok Patki, Nandu Honap, D. S. Reuben and Prashant Thackeray.
A coveted B-High Grade artist of All India Radio, Gauri has been conferred with many awards and accolades such as Yuva Chaintanya Kala Ratna Award, Rotary Youth Icon Award, Rotary Excellence Award, and Adarsh Mahila Puraskar at the hands of Smt. Sindhutai Sapkal.
Life and education
Born in a family blessed with the heritage of hindustani classical music, Gauri started singing at a tender age of three. The musical tradition of two generations of her family coming from her grandmother and mother was carried forward through young Gauri who earned her Sangeet Visharad (equivalent to graduation) from Gandharva Mahavidyalaya (the well known University of Music in India) when she was only 17. She found her source of inspiration as well as her first guru in her mother, the disciple of classical vocalist Pt. Phiroze Dastur of Kirana Gharana. Her advanced education of light vocal music was under the tutelage of the legendary Pt. Yashwant Deo.
As a result of accompanying her mother on stage since childhood, Gauri was always comfortable with stage performances. She won numerous awards in musical competitions in her school and college days, which provided the boost for her future career as singer.
In academics, Gauri has done her post-graduation in English Literature. Her relentless search for knowledge has continued in her studies in African-American women's fiction for her M-Phil degree in English Literature. A true feminist to the core, she is now pursuing her Ph-D in Indo-Caribbean Women's fiction, a fast growing branch of marginal studies which form the crux of global studies on women's writings.
She is happily married to Amol Mirajgaonkar and blessed with a son Aditya and daughter Avanti.
As a singer
Gauri has appeared in more than 1000 stage performances. She has been a part of many music troupes on international tours to countries like USA, Belgium and the UAE.
She has performed in 'Maha Lokgatha' in 2010 at the Gateway of India and NCPA in the presence of the then President of India, Pratibhaji Patil.
She has performed for the Asian Athletic Meet held at Balewadi stadium, Pune.
She has also performed in 'Diwali Mela' 2013, at Times Square, Manhattan, New York, which was arranged by Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation in collaboration with the US government. An Indo-American venture, it was the second best crowd pulling show only next to the New Year Eve's celebrations in the whole of USA.
Gauri has contributed to more than 20 recorded albums published by big labels like T-Series and HMV. Some of her popular albums include ‘Phulpakhroo – on the rock’, ‘Apure Chandane’, ‘Ashtavinayak Namasmaran’, ‘Aa Ab Laut Chalen’, 'Haunting Melodies', 'Ajnabi Shehr Mein', 'Khamoshi Kehne Lagi' with Suresh Wadkar, to name a few. Gauri as a singer can boast of having as many as 11 solo albums of original songs to her credit, which include a variety of music styles like Hindi Ghazals, Hindi geet, Marathi Ghazals, Marathi Bhavgeet, Devotional songs, Remix and Hindustani Semi-Classical.
Gauri’s voice can be heard in jingles for popular advertisements like ‘Vicco Vajradanti’ and ‘Subhash Dairy’. She has provided playback for many Marathi stage plays like Sriyut Samaanya Manoos, Vag Washington cha, etc. and television serials like Colgate Top 10, Music Cafe, Suhana Sahyadri Antakshari, Rambandhu Sahyadri Antakshari (with Prashant Damle), Tuza Maza Jamena (with Sudesh Bhosle), Aayushmaan Bhava, Family dot com, Khawateen-e-hindustan, Kai Ghar Ahe (with Sudesh Bhosle) Een Meen Teen, etc. on Doordarshan Sahyadri channel and series Pankhanchi Savli on Etv Marathi. Her other albums are Ya Dhunda Dhunda Veli, Anandavanbhuvani, Lek Hi Ladachi, Shri Gurudev Datta, Meera Kahe and the latest, Ehsaas.
Gauri has appeared in musical productions on stage. While she has acted in stage plays such as ‘Sangeet Honaji Bala’ and ‘Sangeet Yayati Devayani’, her memorable stage appearance as a singer has been the enormously popular Indo-US Lavani Extravaganza ‘Sundara Manamadhye Bharali' produced jointly by Kalabhavan USA, Suyog and Chandralekha.
As an actor
Gauri has appeared on stage as the female lead actor in two path-breaking Marathi Sangeet Natak (Traditional Marathi Musical Dramas) 'Sangeet Honaji Bala' and 'Sangeet Yayati Devyani'. Both of these plays are milestones in the history of Marathi stage dramas, and Gauri was required to sing, dance (classical dance based on the dance form Kathak) and act in her lead role which won her huge accolades from the audience as well as the judges. She was awarded the National award for Best Singer and Best Actress by the Marathi Sangeet Natak Academy in Delhi, and Best Actress Award as well as the Critic's award for Best Singer-Actress from Maharashtra State Government.
As a producer
Gauri has produced two popular musical entertainment programs for stage. ‘Aa Ab Laut Chalen’ is a collection of nostalgic melodies from the old Hindi movie soundtracks. The other program ‘Swarmayee’ is primarily based on the rich treasure of compositions in Marathi language.
Aa Ab Laut Chalen is Gauri Kavi's self production that takes you back to the black & white era, in which Gauri sings the melodious Hindi film songs of Devika Rani, Ameerbai, Zohrabai, Umadevi, Noorjehan, Suraiyya, Shamshad begum, Geeta Dutt, Asha and Lata, in her golden voice.
In Aa Ab Laut Chalen, Gauri's skill to imitate the style, and diction of these female singers is astonishing and is worth appreciating. Her talent to cultivate the varied styles of these singers with a touch of her own and the intricacies of her singing leave the audiences spellbound. She is well supported by a male artist who contributes to her effort by presenting soulful songs of the great singers like Rafi, Kishore, Talat Mehmood and others.
The towering personality who has stood behind this venture, is Mr. Prashant Thackeray, an acclaimed artist himself. He is the music arranger of the show and leads the troupe. The other musicians are well known senior artists from the film industry. The team effort of the singers, musicians and technicians makes the program well conceived and well delivered.
‘A Musical Evening with Gauri Kavi’ her title show was launched in November 2014, where her platform of showcasing of female artists single handedly becomes more widespread.
Gauri has experimented widely with her voice. Connoisseurs of music have showered their appreciation and support on this program, which is probably the only one of its kind. She simply loves the challenge that comes with this kind of experimentation.