Chandigarh, March 18 : As in the past 38 years, the Pracheen Kala Kendra is again all set to lure the city art lovers with the scintillating and thrilling performances of artists of international caliber during the two-day fest of music and dance. Named after the music maestro Gayanacharya Bhaskarbua Bhakhle, the 39th All-India Bhaskar Rao Nritya and Sangeet Sammelan will begin on March 20 at Tagore Theatre, Sector-18, Chandigarh.
The two-day festival is scheduled is to be inaugurated by Punjab Governor and Administrator Chandigarh General (Retd.) S.F. Rodrigues while Chandigarh Administration Home Secretary Shri Ram Niwas, IAS would be the Chief Guest on the concluding evening.
The Sammelan which is one of the oldest music and dance festivals of its kind in this part of the country, is the Kendra’s homage to Bhaskarbua Bakhle offered uninterruptedly every year since 1969 to this eminent exponent of Indian classical music.
This year too, as in the past, the Kendra is bringing some of the internationally acclaimed artists to perform during the festival. Leading the pack is Pandit Tarun Bhattacharya who is scheduled to open the first evening with his Santoor recital. Hailed as music ambassador of India, Tarun Bhattacharya’s contribution in the field of Santoor playing is well recognized all over the world. Being the disciple of Bharat Ratna Pandit Ravi Shankar, it goes to Tarun’s credit to be the only Santoor maestro from famous Maihar gharana who has revolutionized the Santoor as well as its style of playing. His raagdari and layakari have received critical acclaim both from the audience and critics alike.
The second performer of the first evening will be none other than Padmashree awardee Guru Shovana Narayan who is to offer some of her best choreographic compositions. She is a recognized legend in the annals of dance today. Shovana has blazed a trail in this field of dance giving it new dimensions. She has imparted a brilliant, philosophical and rich textural hue to the age-old Kathak tradition, taking it out of its narrow confines. A staunch believer in the Gurukul parampara, Shovana Narayan imparts her disciples not only details of Kathak but also her own sensitivities and message of love, righteous practices and trust which makes an artiste humane.
The concluding day (March 21) brings to the city audiences two most distinguished stalwarts of the classical dance and music. Ms. Rama Vaidyanathan will open the programme with her Bharatnatyam performance. Rama, a disciple of Guru Yamini Krishnamurty and Guru Saroja Vaidyanathan, is one of India’s leading classical dancers. Everyone who has seen Rama’s performance is struck by her unique thought process and fresh approach to dance. While deeply routed in tradition, she has evolved her own individual style without forsaking the core principles of Bharatnatyam. During her performing career spanning over two decades now, Rama has performed all over the globe mesmerizing audience everywhere.
Versatile vocalist Guru Shubha Mudgal will regale the audience with her vocal recital as the concluding artiste of the festival. Trained by some of the finest musicians of the country namely Pt. Ram Ashreya Jha, Pt. Vinaya Chandra Maudgalya, Pt. Vasant Thakar, Pt. Jitendra Abhisheki, Pt. Kumar Gandharva and Guru Naina Devi, Shubha Mudgal hit the music circuit in late 1980s when she was regarded as one of the most promising classical vocalist. It is her voice that attracts notice with the very first breath she draws on stage. Her voice has range, depth, striking resonance and a knowing quality that says more than she sings. In addition to being a performer, Shubha has also won recognition as a composer. She is the recipient of numerous awards including Padmashree.
With her presentation, the two-day festival would conclude leaving its lasting memories on the minds of the people who have all these years been like a steady stream waiting anxiously to listen and witness some of the best performers presented by Pracheen Kala Kendra all these years.
The Kendra has also taken care to chose some outstanding artists as accompanists to provide accompaniment to the artistes on different evenings. They include Tabla wizard Ram Kumar Mishra to be part of Tarun Bhattacharya’s team, Shakeel Ahmed (Tabla), Madho Prasad (Vocal), Vijay Sharma (Sitar) and Nitin Jain (Light effects) to accompany Shovana Narayan, while Rama Vaidyanathan would be accompanied on Flute by eminent flutist G.S. Rajan, on Vocal Sudha Raghuraman, on Nattuvangam K. Sivakumar and Sumod Sreedharan on Mridangam. To Shubha Mudgal, Aneesh Pradhan and Sudhir Nayak would provide accompaniment on Tabla and Harmonium respectively.
Since its start in 1969, almost all the luminaries from the field of classical dance and music have had the occasion to be part of the annual Bhaskar Rao Nritya and Sangeet Sammelan. This is evident from the participation of Pt. Vinayak Rao Pattwardhan, Pt. Vinayak Rao Vyas, Ustad Bade Mubarak Ali Khan, Ustad Vilayat Khan, Pt. Chaturlal, Pt. Markandeya Mohapatra, Pt. Husan Lal & Pt. Bhagat Ram, Sardar Sohan Singh, Pandit Dilip Chandra Vedi, Pandit A. Kanan, Smt. Malavika Kanan, Dr. M. Balamuralikrishna, Pandit Jasraj, Guru Girija Devi, Begum Parveen Sultana, Guru Shobha Gurtu, Dr. Prabha Atre, Pandit Rajan-Sajan Mishra, Pt. Ajoy Chakraborty, Ustad Rashid Khan, Dr. Sharayu Kalekar, Smt. Sulochana Brahaspati, Pandit Kishan Maharaj, Pandit Ram Narayan, Pandit Shiv Kumar Sharma, Ustad Amjad Ali Khan, Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia, Pandit Debu Chaudhary, Pandit Vishwa Mohan Bhatt, Pandit Tarun Bhattacharya, Ustad Shahid Parvez, Pt. Kumar Bose, Guru Pankaj Charan Das, Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra, Guru Sanjukta Panigrahi, Guru Sonal Mansingh, Guru Kumkum Mohanty, Sri Ratikant Mohapatra, Pandit Durga Lal, Guru Shambhu Maharaj, Guru Sunder Prasad, Guru Gopi Krishan, Guru Kundan Lal Gangani, Guru Sitara Devi, Guru Uma Sharma, Guru Shovana Narayan, Guru Shobha Koser, Guru Raja-Radha Reddy, Guru Swapanasundri, Guru Daksha Seth, Guru Saroja Vaidyanathan, Mrs. Mamata Shankar, Guru Rani Karna and Guru Kiran Segal to name just a few from the long list of truly top grade vocalists, instrumentalists and dancers.