Simmi Bhatia


Executive Director, President and Founder of SAMAA (South Asian Music and Arts Association), has a vision for promoting classical music from South Asia. Though there is representation of the great musicians from the region, the numbers are handful. Her goal is to bring the artists and classical music from South Asia in a diverse and innovative form so as to capture not only classical music lovers but also the general audience.

Though a biostatistician with a background in biological and mathematical sciences, her passion for music has made her an advocate for the promotion of South Asian arts and music. Her interest in music made her learn sitar from the music legend, Ustad Vilayat Khan’s son, the very talented Hidayat Khan.



Sabin Choksi


Vice President of South Asian Music and Arts Association, is a successful businessman with a keen interest in promoting South Asian arts and culture. His passion for music has made him devote time from his busy schedule to help the organization reach its goals of getting classical music to the general public.




Amit Doshi

is an Executive Director in an investment real estate company in NYC, is also on Board of Share & Care foundation, active supporter of Childrens' Hope, Carnegie Hall real estate council among many others. Not only does he believe in the noble cause of helping the economically challenged women and children, but also has a passion for teh arts and culture of India. In his busy schdule, he finds time to support and give his expert advice so as to help in realizing the aims of SAMAA.




Sonia Thakur

has been working with organizations promoting music and arts in US for the past few years. Has worked at Wall Street for the most part of her career, she brings her expertise in finance and experience of working with fine arts to the organization.




Vandana Peshawaria


connoisseur of music and arts having learned the hindustani classical music since her childhood. She has lived all over the world from US, UK to India to the far east, Japan, Taiwan and Singapore accumulating wealth of knowledge in music and culture from all these countries.




Hidayat Hussain


a sitar virtuoso with a lineage of seven generation of musicians, is the son of the legendary, Ustad Vilayat Khan. His advice in the field of music is immensely appreciated and we are honored to have him associated with our organization.




Ila Paliwal

is a trained Hindustani classical vocalist, she has learnt from Pandit Sitaram Vavhare of Gwalior Gharana and is currently under the tutelage of Smt Padma Talwalkar of Jaipur Gharana. Ila has performed in India, USA, China and Switzerland.

She received her BA in English and Economics and MA in Fine Arts and in Hindustani classical vocal music (Sangeet Praveen). She received a BA in Mandarin (Chinese) from Language and Culture Institute, Beijing, China.

In last 25 years, she has lived in six countries and during this time, she has chaired many cultural committees and served on international school boards. Ila supports several philanthropic organizations in the US and India. She works with local organizations to promote Indian classical music in the US and regularly hosts visiting artists from India at her home in Greenwich CT.


Sejal Jhaveri

A Jewelry Designer by profession but finds time to help the cause of the organization due to her passion in South Asian music.


Uma Madapur

Was Director at Verizon Business, graduate of Columbia Business School, IIT Kharaghpur. At present, she has devoted her time to number of non-profit organizations, one of which is SAMAA where she provides her expertise in the management of the organization.


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