As an infant, Dennis Powell would crawl in the fields across home to reach the erstwhile police band’s music room in Amberpet with a zeal to witness their practice sessions. And this deep interest in music right from his young days kept Dennis, a well-known music teacher and performer, rooted to his job at the Hyderabad Public School. In fact, over the years his passion resulted in a marching band, a choir, a library, a music room, a recording studio and many other facilities at the school for students with an interest in music.
Says Dennis, “My family has been into music for six generations! My grandfather, Joseph Powell, was the bandmaster of the Madras Regiment. This band was brought to Hyderabad by the Nizam which resulted in our family and all the band members moving lock, stock and barrel from Madras. This Nizam Police band later became the Andhra Pradesh Police band and my father George Powell was the first conductor of the Indian National Anthem for the band.”
Moreover, in his own generation, all of Dennis’ family members are into music. “At one time, the ‘Powell Brothers’ band performing in Hyderabad consisted of my brothers Gerad (on the drums), Ronald (playing the bass guitar), Savio (on the lead guitar), my sisters Leonne and Rita (doing the vocals) and myself (playing the electric organ),” he shares.
Since music is a part of his soul, Dennis has always thought of the music room at Hyderabad Public School as his home. “For 39 years, I have been nurturing musical talents and the life of many children. On many occasions, many students have found the music room to be a place where they can vent out their feelings and problems. Many of my music students like Sidharth Bendi, Aman Mahajan and Amarnath Hazarika often collaborate on creative projects. I still remember my students like Sharad Gupta (a ghazal singer), Zakir Alladin (now in the entertainment industry) and Satya Nadella (present head of Microsoft) doing well in different spheres of life,” he mentions.
“Music is something we can have in common with anyone and everyone. We are all united by it and I am grateful to be able to share that unity with everyone who has walked through the doors of my beloved music room,” signs off Dennis.