A pulsating evening of raga music in London
"The style of Pandit Ajay Chakraborty was quite evident and the rendition of the Nazrul song was just outstanding" - Dr Gulam Murshid, noted Bangla litterateur.
"The vast variation in the tone of his voice is remarkable" - Dr Shyamal Chowdhury, Minister, Bangladesh High Commission, London. These were just two comments at the end of a captivating evening of vocal Raga music held in London on Saturday.
Organised by Anandadhara Arts, Anal Chatterjee, a disciple of Pandit Ajay Chakraborty began his solo performance with Raga Ragesri followed by a dadra in Raga Pilu. The first half was concluded with a very entertaining Bhajan.
After the intermission, Anal Chatterjee rendered two Bangla songs, one of them composed by Gyan Prakash Ghosh. An added bonus was the presence on stage of his wife. Madhuja Chatterjee who sang two songs including a Bhajan.
Anal Chatterjee then rendered a well-known Nazrul song "Ammi chirotore duure chole jaabo, tobu amaare debo na bhulite" which is a mixture of Ragas Kafi and Kirwani.
The rendition of this song touched the hearts of the audience and was warmly applauded. The evening was rounded off with a duet by Anal Chatterjee and Madhuja Chatterjee. Tabla accompaniment by Aniruddha Mukherjee made the evening more lively and entertaining.
Earlier, the junior students sang two (based on Western tune) and the senior students three Tagore songs in chorus, conducted by Dr Imtiaz Ahmed, who runs Anandadhara Arts music school. The song 'Shukhoheen nishidin' based on Raga Nata Malhar was rendered with experimental tarana which was widely acclaimed.
Earlier, Dr Ahmed, welcoming the guests explained the objectives of his school and said that he wanted to imbibe the philosophy and the meaning of Tagore songs in children from an early age.
He sought the help and co-operation of the parents in achieving these objectives and said that he was happy with the progress being made by the children being brought up in a multi-cultural society in Britain.