It might seem contradictory to listen to, but the only stable factor of music is evolution. Conservative gharanas also have experienced changes in their techniques over the generations in the performances of singers or musical instrument player. A guru never likes his disciple just copying him. He accepts at as his ‘victorious defeat’ (again an opposing statement) when his disciple explores something new. It thus permits evolution in music. It’s the rule of the nature that whatever that opposes a change becomes lifeless. It is applicable to classical music also. If it does not change with the time, it rots, and becomes immaterial.
Like other sectors, in music also, performing artists become so much familiar with a set of rules as per the status quo that they refuse to accept any change. But, as the time passes, they accept it, after realizing truth in the change. Similar to other art varieties, classical music also changes as per the altering socio-economic factors. This development is based on the dealings between musicians and the audience.
After the captivity of classical music to the courts of the Mahàràjàs and Nawàbs, music entered into the public arena in the 20th century. It was the end of Mahàràjàs and Nawàbs, who were like a shelter of music. At that time Pandit V.N. Bhatkhande, Jeevanlal Mattoo and Lala Babu started organizing music conferences. It was the era when musicians would get poor revenue and listeners around 500 to 700. But, thanks to the radio and the gramophone records that initiated spreading music all over the country around the same time. So, the musicians found the state of affairs as a prospect and an attraction to put forth their art form to audiences to start a career in music. These were the same days, when the audience interest became an integral factor of the quality of music being performed. From those circumstances to the current era, musical understanding (and so their expectation also) of the listeners have changed gradually. Its credit can be given to the media coverage.
Though the social evolution has changed music, these days also the musicians uphold the same ideals as those of the 20th century. This creates musicians’ reverence in the audiences, irrespective of their musical perception, as every listener has a different link with the music. Musicians’ honesty towards music reflects in their creation forever.
In the current days of pop music attack, Indian Classical music shouldn’t be anxious about its future. There are and will some musicians (though small in number) in all the times, who have true zeal and dedication for music, regardless of monetary gain.
The musicians and music-lovers need to shoulder the responsibility to make Indian Classical Music friendlier with the inclusion of semi-classical, folk and popular music forms. This requires dramatic change.