The Alpha Foundation, in association with Sri Thyagaja Government College of Music, is organising the ICFAI Jugalbandi Nite, on 22nd August, at the Ravindra Bharathi auditorium. The event will feature Pandit Tarun Bhattacharya on the santoor and Pandit Ronu Majumdar on the flute.
Pandit Tarun Bhattacharya is an Indian classical musician who plays the Indian Santoor. He has studied with Ravi Shankar and played with other Indian classical musicians such as Ronu Majumdar and Vishwa Mohan Bhatt. He has recorded and played both solo compositions and jugalbandis with instruments as diverse as the shehnai and the bansuri. Although he plays primarily in the Hindustani tradition, he has been known to perform Carnatic ragas as well.
Stylistically, Pandit Bhattacharya differs from many other santoor players in his varying uses of tones and timbre. While he has a well-developed and well-utilized hammering technique, including the sliding/glissando technique pioneered by Shivkumar Sharma, he also uses his fingernails in picking patterns by hammering with one hand and plucking with the other. An additional technique involves carefully placed palm mutes during dramatic sections such as a tihai to produce a staccato melodic conclusion.
Pandit Bhattacharya has also modified his santoor to include small blocks beneath each string which facilitate "fine tuning" during performances, since the santoor, with its 90-plus strings, goes out of tune frequently.
Considered by many as a worthy successor to Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia, Ronu Majumdar was initiated into the art of playing the flute by his father, Dr. Bhanu Majumdar, a gifted flautist. Later, Ronu received valuable guidance from Pandit Laxman Prasad Jaipurwale, who was a legendary vocalist. Pandit Vijay Raghav Rao, a scholar and a well-respected performer, groomed Ronu into a concert flautist.
Expert guidance, hard work and natural talent enabled Ronu to establish himself as one of the most accomplished exponents of his instrument and a fine concert artist. Awards and recognition have followed him all the way. The first place in the All-India Radio Music Competition in 1981 was one of the first. He won special praise when he performed at the Asiad '82 in Delhi and in the Festival of India in Moscow, as a performer in the musical ensemble Pandit Ravi Shankar led. Ronu has, in recent years, given performances extensively in Europe, the USA, Canada, Japan, Australia and the Middle East.
The Alpha Foundation, a registered charitable trust established by the Institute of Chartered Financial Analysts of India (ICFAI), has been working for the upliftment of the under-privileged population, especially children, in urban slums and rural areas through a holistic approach combining quality English medium education, nutrition, healthcare services, co-curricular and extra-curricular activities, vocational training and employment opportunities.
The foundation also provides an opportunity to performing artists to showcase their talents in classical/folk music and dance through the ICFAI Music and Dance Festivals. The Foundation has plans to provide such opportunities at district, block and village levels also to revive the dying arts of India.
Please contact Prakash K Rath at 99480-85054 or Praveen Kumar at 99121-11205 for further details.