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Khyal is a Hindustani form of vocal music, adopted from medieval Persian music and based on Dhrupad.
Khyal, literally meaning “thought” or “imagination”,is unusual as it is based on improvising and expressing emotion.
A Khyal is a two- to eight-line lyric set to a melody.
The lyric is of an emotional account possibly from poetic observation.
Khyals are also popular for depicting the emotions between two lovers, situations of ethological significance in Hinduism and Islam, or other situations evoking intense feelings.
The origination of Khyal is controversial, although it is accepted that this style was based on Dhrupad and influenced by Persian music. Many argue that Amir Khusrau created the style in the late 16th century. This form was popularized by Mughal Emperor Mohammad Shah, through his court musicians. Some well-known composers of this period were Sadarang,Adarang, and Manrang.