He brought Indian classical music to the world, collaborating with Yehudi Menuhin and The Beatles.

Indian sitar virtuoso Ravi Shankar has died at the age of 92, after undergoing heart surgery on December 11. Through his mastery of the instrument, his vision and pioneering collaborations with musicians ranging from Yehudi Menuhin to The Beatles, Shankar brought the sitar, classical music and ragas of the subcontinent to prominence on the world stage. As both performer and composer, he was one of the earliest exponents in the west of music from his native India.

Ravindra Shankar, often referred to as “Pandit” (teacher/master) was born in 1920 in the holy city of Benares (now Varanasi), where he was steeped in the local dance traditions and Vedic chants. He came from a cosmopolitan family of Bengali Brahmins: his father was a Sanskrit scholar and his eldest brother, Uday, ran a dance company in Paris, working with ballerina Anna Pavlova and other luminaries. The family relocated to Paris in 1930, with Ravi becoming the youngest dancer in the troupe. It is here that he heard western classical music for the first time, including the guitar of Andrés Segovia, but he was lured back to...

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