Ishani was born in London. The family moved to Bristol when she was two years old. She took an interest in music from an early age.
Ishani began studying the violin at the age of seven. Aged fourteen she was Silver Medalist for her Grade 8 Violin Examination in which she gained 145 out of 150 marks making it the second highest mark in the UK that year. Later that year she also won a scholarship to the Purcell School of Music. While there, Ishani won numerous prizes including the Craxton Memorial Trust and the Martin Trust as well as the Menuhin Banff Scholarship to participate in master classes at the Banff Center of Fine Arts.
She continued her studies at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, where she was the winner of the Sheriff’s Violin Prize. She was invited to participate in numerous master classes, including those with Nathan Milstein and Ruggerio Ricci. Throughout her studies, Ishani’s teachers included Leonard Hirsch, Erich Gruenberg, Jack Glickman and Tessa Kahambatta .
For her 21st birthday, Nigel Dodd wrote a violin sonata called Five Icons for St Peter. Ishani played the piece at its debut at St George’s Hall, Bristol. Her rehearsal with the composer prior to the concert was broadcast on television.
Since leaving the Guildhall in 1988 Ishani has been a member of the BBC Radio Orchestra, the first violin section of the London Philharmonic, and The English Chamber Orchestra.
In 1991, following her success as the first prize winner of the prestigious international Sascha Lasserson Memorial Competition, Ishani presented her critically acclaimed debut recital at the Purcell Room on London’s South Bank. Musical Opinion hailed it as a “performance of formidable technical command and considerable interpretative insight,” and The Guardian declared that Ishani played with “a passion that was intensified by her compelling sense of repose”.
In 1997 Ishani moved from London to Chicago where she devoted time to her love of chamber music. She was a founding member of the Montag Ensemble, enjoying considerable success with broadcasts on Chicago’s WFMT. While living in Chicago, she became a member of the Grant Park Symphony Orchestra.
In 2000, Ishani moved to Los Angeles, and joined the Santa Barbara Chamber Orchestra, the Pacific Symphony Orchestras, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra and the Los Angeles Opera. Ishani also spent 10 years freelance with the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra, the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra and playing in the studios.
Since moving to Haslemere in 2010, Ishani has been teaching at the
Hindhead School of Music. She freelances with the London Philharmonic
Orchestra, the Philharmonia Orchestra and the Royal Philharmonic Concert
Orchestra, and provides private lessons in violin. She founded the Waverley Ensemble which is a baroque string group with local players from Surrey. The group present
three concerts a year at St Christopher’s church in Haslemere. Concert dates
and programmes are listed in Concerts by The Waverley Ensemble.
Ishani is an Associate of London’s Royal College of Music and an Associate of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.