Class Format

Indian classical music has traditionally been an oral practice, passed from generation to generation by students hearing and imitating their teachers and memorizing lessons. A notational system exists but students are encouraged to learn by ear. Students are allowed to record their classes and every raga taught in class is notated on the board in the lecture hall. Students are recommended to copy the written notes, as it will enhance their memorization. Music classes on our main campus (Marin) are held in a comfortable group format and our lecture hall easily accommodates all students. Early registration is encouraged to assist the College in scheduling.

Group Master Classes


The college offers different levels of instrumental group and private classes weekly. Most students learn Sarode, Sitar, or Violin, but one can learn on any instrument. Guitars, Cellos, Flutes and Bass are not uncommon at the Ali Akbar College. Beginning, Intermediate and Advanced Instrumental classes are offered online.

View a sample of an online Instrumental I class
View a sample of an online Instrumental II class
View a sample of an online Instrumental III class


Instruction is offered in Hindustani classical style of the Maihar Seni Gharana as taught by Ustad Ali Akbar Khan. Vocal music is considered the foundation of all music in this tradition. Vocal classes are offered weekly in both group and private settings. All students are encouraged to participate. Vocal classes are offered online.  View a sample of an online Beginning Vocal class


Learn how to improvise and develop Alap, Jor, Jalla, Gat, Vistar, Tan, Sat Sangat and Sawal Jawab. This class encourages interaction and for each student to play both individually and along with the teacher. Prior training in Indian Classical music required. Lead by Alam Khan. This class is offered online. 


This class focuses on technique development and compositional material specifically geared for sitar players. Instrumental and/or vocal compositions of Ali Akbar Khan will be taught on sitar, in conjunction with sitar techniques such as ghasit, krintan, gamak, reverse meend, meend – krintan combinations, sapat – meend combinations, bols, and playing in the bass register (pancham/kharaj). This class is offered online. 


Pandit Swapan Chaudhuri teaches Tabla classes in small groups arranged by the level of the students. Students gain accompaniment skills by playing for vocal, instrumental and supplementary classes, as well as practicing with other students. Intermediate and advanced classes are offered online.

View a sample of an online Intermediate Tabla class
View a sample of an online Advanced Tabla class

Online Classes

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