Hindustani Classical Music – Dhrupad and Dhamar Recital
By Satinath Bhattacharya from Kolkata, disciple of the late Pt. Shib Shankar Mukherjee and Shri Kumar Prasad Mukherjee
Accompanied by Apurba Lal Manna (pakhawaj)
Shri Bhattacharya will present Gouhar Bani style of Dhrupad
Born to a family
steeped in musical traditions, Satinath was inducted at a very early age to the
world of music by his father the late Haranath Bhattacharya. Since that
beginning, he has received training in khayal music from a number of leading
musicians such as Sripati Nath Chatterjee, the late Pt. Arun Bhattacharya of
Since 1973, Satinath has received extensive training in Dhrupad music under the guidance of Pt. Shib Shankar Mukherjee, torch bearer of the Gouhar Bani style of Dhrupad singing. Satinath received the title of Sangeet Sudhakar from the Surer Maya Sangeet Samaj, Kolkata; Sangeet Visharad from Pracheen Kala Kendra, Chandigarh; and Sangeet Bharati from the Varanasi Sangeet Akademy. He has also received a Fellowship in Indian Classical Music – Dhrupad from the Ministry of Human Resource Development, Govt. of India for research and development of Dhrupad.
Satinath has been regularly presenting concerts at prestigious musical platforms and at leading Dhrupad Samarohs in different parts of the country including at Varanasi; Haridas Sangeet Sammelan, Mumbai; Karnataka Music Association Conference, etc. to name just a few. He has also recorded a music programme for Radio France as well as a CD.
Satinath continues in his pursuit of excellence in his art form, imparting training to music lover all over the world.
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As per the ancient treatises, there are four styles or vaanis in the singing of dhrupad and dhamar. The highest form of the vaanis is regarded as the Goberhaar (Gaurhaar), the Suddha or the purest of all the vaanis. It is considered to be the king among the vaanis. The next in order of hierarchy is the Khand Haar vaani, regarded as the commander. While the Dagur vaani is supposed to be the dewan, or the prime minister, the Naurhaar vaani is the finance minister,
Satinath Bhattacharya is a follower of the Goberhaar or the Suddha vaani. As such, there is no over ornamentation in his renderings of the dhrupad or the 12-beat Chautal compositions that are rendered without any rhythmic variations or display of arithmetic permutations. The composition is just rendered with purity in style by singing all the four sections of it (sthayee, antara, abhog, and sanchari) without delving into any form of rhythmic variation that is more like a plain and simple chanting of a hymn. It is in the rendering of a dhamar composition in which the singer enters into a `battle royal' with the pakhawaj player, thereby displaying each other's rhythmic prowess and challenging their capabilities.
This evening was his first public recital after her wife's demise, so dedicated this particular recital to her memory.
One however wished the singer had selected a dusk-time raga instead of the late evening's raga Bihag, which he however rendered with good musical insight. The various stages in the raga's alap-jor contained scores of musical variations with many a soothing melodic strain that fell pleasingly on the ear. The 12-beat composition of Mian Tansen, "Uttan Guni" was rendered with tunefulness, and as expected, in the manner of the chanting of a hymn.
His next rendering in the raga Bageshwari was also rendered with a brief alap-jor and followed by a dhrupad composition ("Gopinath, Gopi Raman"), which too was rendered without entering into any form of rhythmic variations. However, it was in the dhamar composition ("Sakhi Suni Murali) that the singer displayed his commendable rhythmic capabilities by executing several rounds of complex variations and entering into intricate rhythmic dialogues with the pakhawaj player, Apurb Lal Manna, a disciple of Delhi's pakhawaj maestro, Pandit Dal Chand Sharma.
Satinath wished to conclude his recital of the evening with a charmingly rendered dhrupad composition in the raga Adana ("Maharani, Mahakali"), but the audience, comprising several leading musicians such as Ustads Asad Ali Khan, Fahim Rahimuddin Dagar, Wasif Fyazuddin Dagar, and Pandit Dal Chand Sharma, requested the artiste to sing some more, to which he complied by rendering a brief alap and a dhamar composition in the raga Kedar ("E Maayee Ri, Shyam").