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ragamala

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A couple of pics of a place I happened across in Kolkata..
http://www.trulliland.co.uk/private/nbs1.jpg

http://www.trulliland.co.uk/private/nbs2.jpg

Rather more inspiring than the Ranjan Roy advocates' chambers
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Lars

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Reply with quote  #2 
Very nice, is that his house or some sort of museum?
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ragamala

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Quote:
Originally Posted by "Lars"
Very nice, is that his house or some sort of museum?
This is his house. His wife, who proved extremely gracious, lives there still. Nikhilda's presence is still strongly felt. When I've time (I'm between India and Italy right now via the UK) I'll post a description. I felt myself very fortunate to be invited there.
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Mulamoodan

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Keep rambling. We are loving it.
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spoutmouth

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Reply with quote  #5 
Do tell more....

M
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ragamala

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Despite the fact that the first ICM concert I attended was of Vilayat Khan, and the first record I bought was by Ravi Shankar, it was the music and personality of Nikhil Banerjee with which I fell in love.

Sadly I saw too few concerts by him before he was taken, and his death came as a devastating blow to me. I can still often have tears rising when I think of music's untimely loss.

So it was something in the nature of a pilgrimage when I was privileged to be able to visit the house in Kolkata where he lived and died.

Perhaps more accurately I should say apartment, as the home is on the second floor of a house in the Jodepur Park area of the city. By Indian standards very spacious, not posh by western standards. The house still bears the name Nikhil Banerjee by the door and the postbox still bears his name.

I visited, by appointment, with four friends, and our first duty on entering the lounge was to make a humble offering of some flowers, which we placed on the sideboard under one of his pictures. The lounge is very spacious, on the walls pictures both formal and informal, which included a blow-up of a picture I had seen on a Raga records CD, Nikhil's wedding (a striking couple), and most charming of all a very informal holiday photograph of Nikhil, bare-chested, with one of his daughters. Also on the walls were the originals of the awards of Padma Shri, and the posthumous Padmabushan.

Mrs Banerjee was a welcoming hostess, and left us alone for a while to look around before she joined us for a chat. Unfortunately she had a fall and broke her leg in two places six months earlier, and walked slowly with the aid of a stick. But she could still stand long enough for cooking, it seems, and we enjoyed some delicious sweets she had made.

We were also shown into Nikhil's practice room, which stands over the corridor from the lounge and far down the corridor from the bedroom. Mrs B said during his long practice hours he was always anxious not to disrupt the rest of the household. Maybe also he wanted a quiet place for himself :wink: Mrs B told us when he studied with Alluddin Khan he used to go for days into the forest to practice in peaceful surroundings.

The practice room is entirely given over to Nikhil's memory. There is a shrine to Saraswati, and an imposing bust of Nikhil sculpted by Roma herself. There are various formal pictures on the walls, including one of Allauddin Khan.

Pride of place, in a glass case, is Nikhil's sitar. Now, sadly, it is needing a bit of attention. There are also other instruments standing along the side wall, including tanpuras and tabla.

We didn't tax Mrs B with interview-type questions, I think we were just happy to let the peace and aura of the home sink into us.

Before we left she kindly produced for us copies of the inauguration celebration in 1987 of the Nikhil Bandyopadhyaya Smriti Sansad. I'll try and scan some of the pictures there when I've time, they are interesting and probably haven't been seen widely before, also there are a few interesting articles, although most is in Bengali.
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John

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Very touching. Thanks for sharing.
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ragamala

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Courtesy of my good friend Ajay, a pic of the bust I mentioned...
http://www.trulliland.co.uk/private/bust.jpg
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ragamala

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Thanks again to ajay (who is a wonderful person and whose dedication to Nikhilda matches or exceeds mine) here are more pics
http://www.trulliland.co.uk/private/ajay.jpg

http://www.trulliland.co.uk/private/award1.jpg

http://www.trulliland.co.uk/private/sitar1.jpg

http://www.trulliland.co.uk/private/tanpura%20etc.jpg
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redtape

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Reply with quote  #10 
Beautiful. Thank you. You reminded me to actually take pictures at Zala-Sahib's House (apparantly I had been pronouncing it wrong ops: how was I to know it is not Jhalla Sahib, to be honest still confused about the ENGLISH spelling )
He has wonderful pictures of (and ovoisly with) the God Pt. N.Bannerjee literally everywhere on walls, will make a video tomorrow~ but I don't think he has anything like that amazing statue
So sublime that someone would have that. It makes me feel wonderful yet sad simultaneously to see it ~ for many reasons. Thank your friend as well please. Can we know the artist's name that carved or made it? Will she/he make another one similar to the one pictured? Sorry for all the questions feel free to ignore any or all of them.
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ragamala

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Quote:
Originally Posted by "redtape"
Can we know the artist's name that carved or made it? Will she/he make another one similar to the one pictured? Sorry for all the questions feel free to ignore any or all of them.
I think I may have said the bust/statue is of Mrs B (Roma)'s making. A talented artist in her own way as well, as is well-evident here.

here's another pic.
http://www.trulliland.co.uk/private/shrine2.jpg
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cwroyds

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Reply with quote  #12 
Beautiful stuff.
Thanks for the pictures.
Nikhil Banerjee reaches me more than any other musician.

It is sad to see that incredible sitar sitting lonely in the glass case.
It would be a great honor to be allowed to clean and restring it, get it in playable shape.
Partha Chatterjee told me that it has actually seen its day in terms of being a useable sitar.
It was reworked many times and now needs to be retired, but so sad.
That instrument rings in my ears all day long.
I listen to more NB than any other music.

Thanks again.
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