Auckland music lovers are in for a treat this Saturday with Shukra Tara, an evening full of songs composed by celebrated music director Padma BhushanSrinivasKhale.

Swar Sadhana Academy and Mohan Nadkarni Foundation is hosting Shukra Tara at 6 pm on Saturday 16 March at Balmoral’s Mount Eden War Memorial Hall. The concert is free to attend.

Khaleji has the unique distinction of bringing together two of the greatest names of Indian music, both awardees of India’s topmost civilian honour Bharat Ratna – PanditBhimsen Joshi and LataMangeshkar.

Khaleji brought the two all-time greats together in the globally bestselling Hindi devotional album Ram Shyam Goon Gaan

Besides these two legends, almost every popular singer has lent their voice to his compositions including Asha Bhonsle, SudhirPhadke, SumanKalyanpur, AnuradhaPaudwal, Shankar Mahadevan, Suresh Wadkar and many more. He mentored the latter two, Shankar and Suresh, in their younger years.

As well as Marathi and Hindi, Mumbai-based SrinivasKhale composed songs that have become famous in Bengali, Gujarati and Sanskrit languages.

Khaleji is most well known for his compositions of SantVani, the abhangs (lyrical devotional verses) of Maharashtra’s historical saint poets, sung by none other than Bharat RatnaPanditBhimsen Joshi.

A similar Hindi series that the two collaborated on and that became best sellers was “SunoBhaiSadho” with verses by Hindi saint poets. In fact, Santvani as a genre could well be attributed to PanditKhale.

SwarSadhana’sSandhyaRaoBadakere herself has had a long tutelage under Khaleji.

Presenting Khaleji’s memorable compositions will be the pick of Auckland’s own talented singers: ArunKhotkar, Hemant Shirsat, Shweta Divekar-Shirsat, Bhushan Phalnikar, VidyaTeke, PrajaktaPande, MayuriBhole, SrishaaIyer, Siddhi Nigudkar, Ekta Kumar, Maitreyee Pande, Shikha Shetia and Sandhya Badakere.

Playing with them will be well known Auckland musicians HemantThaker on keyboards, ArunKhotkar on harmonium and VivekAnturkar on the table. DrNilimaUpadhyay and KaustubhPethe will compere the programme.

What: Shukra Tara, a tribute to music director Padma BhushanSrinivasKhale
When: Saturday, March 16, 6 p.m.
Where: Mt Eden War Memorial Hall, Dominion Road, Balmoral, Auckland
Entry: Free