Khyal, also Khayal, Kheyal, Hindi ख़्याल, Urdu: خیال, is the most popular classical vocal and instrumental styles of North Indian music. The word khyal (DMG Hayal ) comes from Arabic and means "idea" or " notion ", also called " imagination ". This term was transported in the course of the takeover of the Persian as court and chancery language of the Mughal rulers in India. In contrast to the older stricter Dhrupad style popularized in the 18th century Khyal allows the musicians more freedom, he seems more fluid and elegant.


There are old folk song forms and in Rajasthan, a popular drama, called khyal. The origin of the style is unclear, Muslim immigrants from Persia or Central Asia could have picked up on older forms of Indian and mixed with the religious qawwali singing style. As a possible copyright Amir Khusrau (1253-1325) is called. It developed two styles of this Muslim chants: in the 14th century, the religious qaval - gharana of Amir Khusro and the kalavanta - gharana were more mundane of Baiju Bavra and Brij Chand in the 16th century disciple of Swami Haridasa and Suradasa ( Surdas ). Another influence may have been the pachda, Hindustani women sung love songs. Some authors reject the Persian influence from entirely; Sanskrit scholars Jaideva Singh (1893-1986) led back the ornamental vocal style on sadharana giti ( " general style of song" ), a term in Bharata Muni's Natyashastra written around the time of. His classical embossing received the Khyal of Niyamat Khan ( called Sadarang ) and his nephew Firoz Khan ( called Adarang ), musicians at the court of the Mughal emperor Muhammad Shah (ruled 1719-1748 ). Probably not before the 18th century, the division of music in styles of different Gharanas (music traditions) are represented originated.


The text genre khyal is about love, the love of God ( bhakti ) in connection with the adventures of Krishna or of the veneration of sacred Muslim. The musical style is one of the classical Indian music to nibaddha sangita ( nibaddha, sanskrit " set, squeezed ," sangita, " music " ), a closed form, in which a poetic text ( pada ), a melody ( raga ) and rhythm patterns ( tala ) is connected to each other in a certain way. The freely improvised prelude to the beginning of Khyal Dhrupad or say anibaddha. The nibbaddha sangitas of North Indian music include its Khyal the Dhrupad, was given its present form in the 15th or 16th century, the slight lyrical style Thumri and Tappa, a late 18th century developed classical style.

A Khyal begins with an alap, which presented the raga and meaningless syllables ( tana ) are sung to the ornamentation of the melody. The following are the two fixed parts of the Khyal sthayi ( "stable " even asthayi ) and antara. In the first part of the melody shapes move in the lower and middle tones of voice, and end in the same phrase. The following antara borne by the singer before in a higher voice.

Two types of Khyal be distinguished: the large slow bada khyal, also Vilambit khyal or Dhima khyal ( Dhima, "slow "), which is related to the Dhrupad, and the little Khyal, Chhota khyal or drut khyal ( drut, "fast" ), which is mostly played by the slow Khyal.

The singer is often melodic sarangi of the string lute or support a harmonium, the rhythm makes the boiler drum tabla pair. Instrumental Khyals are usually played sitar on the long-necked lute.