Friday, 6 March 2015

Full-house concert on the 3rd of March

Now-a-days, you will see that even small auditoriums in Kolkata do not reach capacity, when it's not something like Bollywood/Tollywood/band music which is being served. It's rarer to have full-house concerts of Classical Music in Kolkata, considered the Mecca of Indian Classical Music.
'Pt. Laxmikanta Laha Music and Cultural Academy' had organized an evening of Indian Classical Music on the 3rd of March at Birla Academy. It was great to see that there were even quite a few people standing, as the auditorium was packed.

There were many top level musicians in the audience. It was indeed my pleasure to play for Pandit Subroto Roy Chowdhury (Sitar-vadak), Pandit Joydeep Ghosh (Sarodiya), Pandit Sugata Nag (Sitar-vadak), Pandit Abhijit Banerjee (Tabla-vadak), Pandit Sandip Deb (tabla-vadak), Pandit Siddhartha Roy-Choudhury (Sarodiya). It was great to see my colleagues there in the audience.
But, it was an honour and my pleasure to have one of the foremost Sitar maestros of the world, Pandit Budhaditya Mukherjee in the front row.
I started the concert by taking Ijazzat from the maestro.
Hindole Bhai, one of the foremost disciples of Pandit Sankha Chatterjee, was on tabla and Soham, my student, on tanpura. Hindole Bhai has been playing with my Ustad for around 20 years now, so he knows our style and compositions better than many. His accompaniment was enjoyable.
The concert was very well appreciated. But, I would say that it was an honour to get Pandit Budhaditya Mukherjee's blessings and appreciation. It was indeed very kind of him to listen to my complete 1 hour recital with patience and love.
Every other musician mentioned, expressed their appreciation.
Joydeep Da hugged and kissed me after my recital. Well, they are the torchbearers in whose footsteps we, the younger generation, are following. So, if they found something to appreciate in my music, the credit should go to my Guru Ustad Shahid Parvez Khan and to them.

It was also great to have one of the foremost Sitar-makers of India, Jayanta Sengupta in the audience. My Sitar is a fully custom made one. We have worked together for years to get this instrument done in the way I wanted it to be. There have been many failed attempts as well. Everything starting from the measurements of the body, curvature of frets and material of bridge to the decorative work and even the tailpiece is different from a standard Gandhar-Pancham Sitar. I had supplied him with measurements and parameters to work his magic on. I have, myself, handpicked the gourd out of 100 others. So it was a proud moment for Jayanta Da that his hand-made Sitar's voice was appreciated. Quite a few musicians asked me about the maker of the Sitar. So it was good to have Jayanta Da there.

Several people from the media were also present, including Music critic and vocalist Meena Banerjee, student of Srikant Bakhre, So, perhaps, her review will be out this Saturday in the Marquee (The Statesman).

Some moments from that concert (photo courtesy Vinayak, my student)-


 




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