Winner of Vox-Pop award for World Traditional Song of the year at the 10th US Independent Music Awards 2011 (IMA) and Toronto Best World CD Award by Toronto Exclusive Magazine 2010, Toronto based Indian-Canadian Architect-Musician Vandana Vishwas is one of the leading exponents of Sugam-Sangeet in North America. Vandana specializes in composing, arranging and singing Ghazals, Bhajans, Geet and Thumri. The international success and critical acclaim of Vandana's debut CD 'Meera - The Lover...', released in 2009, has catapulted Vandana into the north American World Music scene, where within no time she has carved a niche for herself. Apart from winning these awards, Vandana has been nominated for several other awards such as the Canadian Indies 2010, TIMA (Toronto Independent Music Awards) 2010, Mississauga's own Marty Awards 2010 (honourable mention) and 2011, K.M. Hunter award for music by Ontario Arts Council 2011, to name a few. She has performed on leading stages such as the Harbourfront Centre, Trane Studio and the Exhibition Place, Toronto; Living Arts Centre and Celebration Square, Mississauga to name a few. she is involved with SAMA (Sacred Arts & Music Alliance) Canada and is in many ways, a source of inspiration and pride for Indians living outside India.
Her exceptional talent as a vocalist was recognized early when she sang complex melodies with ease as a four year old, prompting her parents to enrol her in the renowned institute for Indian classical music - Akhil Bharatiya Gandharva Mahavidyalaya Mandal of Miraj, and she started learning from Pandit Parashuram Sharma and Smt. Vimal Soni in small Industrial township of BALCO in central India.
By the time she was barely 16, she had already earned a Sangeet Visharad, the equivalent of a bachelorís degree in Indian classical vocal music. Over the course of the next five years spent earning her bachelorís degree in Architecture, she continued to win every local and regional vocal competition, without exception. Vandana was a contract artist with All India Radio where she sang songs composed by her and her mentor Mr. D.K. Gandhe. Learning the expressive qualities of ghazal singing from Mr. D.K. Gandhe shaped her unique vocal style. Her association with All India Radio lasted for ten years until she left India to pursue a career in Architecture.
During one of her All India Radio recording sessions, she was heard by renowned ghazal maestros Ustaad Ahmed and Mohammed Hussain who were impressed by her voice and they too shared with her the intricacies of ghazal singing.
Vandana has performed on Doordarshan and at the prestigious Acharya Brihaspati Sammelan conducted by Sur Singar Samsad, Mumbai in 1993. Although she had once dreamt of singing for Bollywood, Vandana consciously chose not to pursue that dream because the impossibly demanding life of the bustling city of Mumbai would make it a difficult place to survive given her physical limitations and instead proceeded to work as an Architect.
Vandana now lives in Toronto, Canada, where she works with one of the largest Architectural practices in Canada. While building her Architectural career, Vandana felt that she always missed music in her life, and that singing was a source of healing for her, prompting her to release her debut CD 'Meera-The loverÖ'.