Born in Beirut, Lebanon, international performing artist Paul Livingstone is one of the leading sitarists in America today. He has focused his studies in the creative tradition of Indian classical raga music in which he has been rigorously trained for the past 25 years in India and the US studying under the late Amiya Dasgupta, Rajeev
Taranath and the living
Ravi Shankar.Paul has performed in around the US, Mexico, Europe & Asia and has just returned from a major concert tour performing Indian music in Nepal, India, Czech & Germany.
As a committed composer Paul leads his own Arohi Ensemble and has composed for film, television, theater and dance. He also plays a variety of fretless guitars and requintos of his own design and has also developed a unique style of 'ragajazz chamber music' blending Indian ragas, jazz, counterpoint & rhythmic material from diverse world traditions. As a creative force for true 'world music synthesis', Paul maintains a clear vision for the dissemination of traditional forms and is grounded in the rich cultural milieu of Los Angeles as a dedicated teaching artist & community activist.
Paul has performed in setting as a sitar soloist with Symphony &
Choral to ragajazz, pop & rock contexts, in major festivals and venues such as the Hollywood Bowl...
Paul resides in Highland Park (NELA) as a local musician,
composer, activist & educator he founded the Sangeet School of World Music.
Paul has just completed his 2nd cd called
'Salaam Suite', featuring many Los
Angeles based & international artists including
members of Ozomatli, Quetzal & Kan Zaman.
Paul played on Ozomatli's
2005 Grammy award winning 'Street Signs'. Paul also
received an LA Music Week Award certificate of appreciation
from the City of Los Angeles from District #1 Councilman
Ed Reyes. The award & certificate are "In appreciation
of pioneering music in our community and dedicating
your life in teaching the rich multicultural heritage
of music to our youth, therefore making our city a better
place in which to live."
Paul composed Indian music and recorded sitar, sarod
& requinto on the upcoming Albert Brooks film 'Looking
for Humor in the Muslim World' with composer
Michael Giacchino (The Incredibles) being release in
'As Vishnu Dreams' was Paul's first
theater production which he composed for Indian/world
music trio. Paul played sitar, requinto, fretless guitar
& Balinese percussion along Peter Jacobson on cello
& Pial Hussain on tabla. This Cornerstone
Theater run featured an extraordinary combination
of acting & shadow puppets accompanied by world
music soundscapes & live music.
Paul spent summer of 2004 on an APPEX Fellowship in Bali and also visited Jogyakarta to celebrate the
100th birthday master musician & teacher of Pak
Chokro. APPEX was a wonderful collaborative creative
experience with an amazing group of puppeteers, dancers
and musicians from India, Philippines, Malaysia, Java,
Bali & US.
He most recently produced & performed in the 'Wehda ~ Arab & American unity event' as part
of the World
Festival of Sacred Music. Paul received a small
Subito grant from the American Composers Forum for a
new piece 'Al-Takween' which was premiered in the festival.
Last January Paul helped organize & performed in
a Indian, Thai & Indonesian music for Tsunami victims
in South Asia at the Senshin Buddhist Temple which raised
over $23,000.Additional performances of note this year
have include Santa Monica Festival, Occidental, Pierce
& Glendale Colleges & Hathaway Family Resource
Paul is a Cal Arts alumni BFA & MFA and an adjunct
faculty member in the Cal
Arts School of Music. Paul also founded the Sangeet
School of World Music serving low-income minority youth
in NE Los Angeles.
Paul has also studied Persian classical music with
Hossein Alizadeh, Javanese Gamelan with Pak Djoko Walujo,
Macedonian music with Miroslav Tadic, and jazz with
Larry Koonse and Charlie Haden. With concert performances
in the US, Mexico and Spain, Paul has played & recorded
with world music, jazz & popular artists such as Ozomatli,
Alanis Morrisette, Lian
Ensemble, Swapan Chaudhuri, Geetha Bennett, John
Bergamo, Glen Velez, Hossien Alizadeh, Jihad Racy, Poovalur
Sriji, Kenny Burrell, Chitravina RaviKiran, Pedro Eustache,
Wadada Leo Smith, Sandip Burman and Prince Diabate with
whom Paul created a new ensemble called Tumbafé composing new world music and playing
sitar with master kora player and griot musician from
Guinea, West Africa, Prince Diabaté. This unique and
innovative Indo/African quartet was received with tremendous
enthusiasm 1992 World Festival of Sacred Music.
Alongside a community of dedicated individuals Paul
has formed and is directing the Sangeet School of World Music and Dance in Los Angeles where he teaches many students on sitar,
guitar and classes such as Indian music for Western
Instruments and World Traditions of Modal Improvisation.
A composer and session musician for film Paul has composed
for Ozomatli, Alanis Morristte,
documentary film soundtracks such as Movements
in Madness. Having composed & performed
the music for the award winning film, 'Turbans'. Paul's original
Turbans soundtrack is now available. Paul
composed and recorded an Indian/hip hop musical score
for Swaroop, an innovative Warner Brothers
animation short on Cartoon Network.
Paul's debut record titled 'Arohi' 2002 incorporates unique
variety of traditional and contemporary instruments
from around the globe, this collection of original creative
world music stirs up a potent blend of traditional and
contemporary forms, styles and improvisations.
Arohi Ensemble features Leonice
Shinemann on world percussion drum set and Peter Jacobson on cello and flute/woodwind
Eustache from Venezuela.
The Arohi Ensemble, The group is augmented on
occasion by guest artists such as explosive mridangist
Poovalur Sriji, Geetha Bennett vocal and veena master
from South India and master Yugaslav guitarist Miroslav
Tadic. Arohi, a term from Indian music means "an ascending
Paul has received Artist in the Community grants from
the city of Los Angeles has conducted music workshops
and produced free and low cost concerts of world music
and dance events in schools, churches and community
centers since 1993. He is committed to making diverse
art forms of music and dance available to people of
all backgrounds in Los Angeles.