Prabhu Rang Bina Mohe Sab Sukh Dina... as the rendition of the popular raag Bhoopali echoed in the open-air auditorium of the Centre for Cultural Resources and Training on Saturday, applause greeted the performer. Organised by Sangitanjaly Foundation, it was only apt that eminent Hindustani vocalist Pt Ajoy Chakrabarty sang ragas which were the favourite of his guru Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khan as part of the two-day national festival of music and dance as a tribute to the Ustad.
Pt Ajoy Chakrabarty said that the Ustad was one of the greatest vocalists and till date his recordings were amongst the highest sellers. “People don’t know the detailing of his gayaki and through this concert I wanted to let the younger generation know about his immense talent. There were three things about Ustadji which made him a legend, first his open voice which in itself was an example of his large open heart. Second was his ability to perfectly place the notes and most importantly his inhuman amount of practicing ability,” says Pt Ajoy Chakrabarty, fondly reminiscing his guru.
According to Panditji, there could not be a better way to remember the maestro than here in Hyderabad where he breathed his last. “It is because of his immense contribution that the Patiala gharana is surviving,” he says.
At least two dozen of his students are performing all over the world and are keeping the Patiala gharana alive. But that won’t be enough, says Pt Chakrabarty. “The younger generation should come forward to save tradition.”
He met Prime Minister Narender Modi twice to make music compulsory from classes V to X, he shared. And added, “IIT Kharagpur has become the first institute to teach the improvisation of scientific appliances and advancement through music and research. And they have called me to teach them. I am really happy that music has been given such a place.”
But in this age of technological advancement, is music suffering? “I have my online classes ‘Music for all’ through internet which enables me to teach and reach a wider spectrum. On the other hand, the same technology keeps people busy and they are not able to devote time. Balancing everything is important and people shouldn’t depend on technology for everything,” says Panditji.
When asked about who amongst his disciples and contemporary singers can take his favourite guru’s gharana ahead, pat comes his reply, “One singer that I can vouch for is my daughter Kaushiki Chakraborty and another student Brajeswar Mukherjee.”...