Introducing Trinity Laban’s Inaugural Udmi Devi and Bagri Foundation Scholar

Indian-born pianists Alique Khambatta and Anuvrat Choudhary have joined Trinity Laban’s Faculty of Music as the first recipients of the Udmi Devi Scholarship and Bagri Foundation Scholarship respectively.

The Udmi Devi Scholarship, made possible by a generous anonymous gift of £100,000, honours Thakurain Udmi Devi, a progressive and caring figure who placed great emphasis on the education of all those around her. The Scholarship supports aspiring performing artists born and educated in India to study at either undergraduate or postgraduate level at Trinity Laban. This furthers the Conservatoire’s commitment to widening access for talented and dedicated international students and reinforces its role as a leader for international development in arts education and innovation. Pianist Alique Khambatta is the first recipient of this new award, enabling her to join Trinity Laban’s internationally celebrated Keyboard Department as an undergraduate. Over the four-year programme, she will develop her playing technique and performance skills, grow her artistic voice, and collaborate with a range of artists. Before joining Trinity Laban, Alique had to travel a total of eight hours every weekend from her home to Mumbai and back for music lessons as her school was unable to offer them. Now, the dedicated performer benefits from a multi-year scholarship which is supporting her to pursue her dreams of further study. On being awarded the Scholarship, Alique Khambatta comments:

“I am so grateful to the donor and to Trinity Laban for awarding me this scholarship, which has given me the opportunity to learn at such a progressive institution. The minute I stepped into the audition room in Mumbai, I knew Trinity Laban was the school I wanted to go to. The atmosphere created was so open and friendly. During my time at Trinity Laban, I really want to expand my musical knowledge to help me educate people and introduce them to the vast depths and layers of classical music.”

The young pianist is also looking forward to the opportunity to play with an orchestra, something she never previously had the chance to do.

Trinity Laban’s Director of Music, Havilland Willshire comments:

“Thanks to financial support like the Udmi Devi Scholarship, talented international students can train with us and seize opportunities they would otherwise be unable take due to financial limitations. The new scholarship builds on the existing support available specifically for Asian students, strengthening our aim to diversify access to our training.”

Supported by the Bagri Foundation, talented young musician Anuvrat Choudhary will study within Trinity Laban’s internationally celebrated Keyboard Department. Over two-years of postgraduate study he will enhance his technique and performance skills, collaborate with fellow artists and make lasting connections to support a successful career as a professional musician. Established in 1990, the Bagri Foundation was founded on education, and is committed to individual excellence in the arts. It works collaboratively across artistic disciplines to engage and inspire, raising the visibility of artists and experts from across Asia and the Diaspora. The Scholarship is part of the Foundation’s Springboard strand of activity which encourages emerging artists from Asia and the Diaspora to develop their work, especially those who need extra support. As a Bagri Foundation Scholar at Trinity Laban, Anuvrat will continue exploring his interests in performance, teaching and the philosophy of music to add a fresh perspective to the presentation and interpretation of musical works.

On being awarded the inaugural scholarship Anuvrat comments:

“I am hugely excited to be the first Bagri Foundation Scholar. The generous support from the Foundation allows me to study on Trinity Laban’s Master’s programme, which will be of great benefit and value, both materially and in spirit. It will be my most earnest endeavour to do full justice, in the course of my study at the Trinity Laban Conservatoire, to the recognition that has been accorded me by the Bagri Foundation.”

Trinity Laban’s Director of Music, Havilland Willshire comments:

“Trinity Laban is a leader for international development in arts education and innovation, and we are proud to be working with the Bagri Foundation to further our commitment to widening access for talented and dedicated international students. Our relationship with the Foundation is highly valued and of huge importance to us. It is our hope that we can continue to work together into the future to support young performing artists from Asia.”

Alka Bagri, Trustee of the Bagri Foundation says:

“The Foundation is pleased to welcome the first Bagri Foundation Scholar to the renowned Trinity Laban institution. With our roots in education, we are excited to continue this legacy through our Springboard strand, where we aim to make real difference to the artists we support. We cannot wait to see how Anuvrat develops his talents on the Master’s programme and look forward to working with him and Trinity Laban throughout the academic year.”