Four mystic bards recalled at Shilpakala

Cultural Correspondent
Four mystic bards were recalled at a commemorative programme held at Music and Dance Centre of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy on Tuesday.
The programme, organised by the academy, featured discussions on folk bards Gurusaday Dutt, Radharaman Dutt, Bijoy Sarker and Ramesh Shil.
Professor Shafi Ahmed, professor A Y M Jafar, Mohsin Hossain and Tapan Bagchi spoke at the event, which was organised as part of a ten-day reminisce programme, titled Smriti Satta Bhabishyat, which commenced on June 24.
Professor Shafi Ahmed spoke on life and works of Gurusaday Dutt, who was a noted folklorist and also the founder of the Bratachari Movement.
‘Gurusaday Dutt made huge contribution to folk art, dance and music. Though he was a civil servant, he protested against the then British government on several occasions,’ said Shafi Ahmed.
Gurusaday Dutt was born on May 10, 1882 at Karimganj, Sylhet and died on June 25, 1941 in Kolkata. He is mostly known for his contributions to Bengal’s folk art, folk dance and folk music. He spent his lifetime in collecting and studying art objects from the remotest corners of the then undivided Bengal. Gurusaday Dutt also wrote extensively on folk culture.
Professor A Y M Jafar discussed about the contribution of Ramesh Shil.
‘Ramesh Shil has enriched our rich folk music treasure trove with his timeless creations. His songs are still popular among music lovers. Steps should be taken to promote and preserve his works,’ said A Y M Jafar.
Ramesh Shil was born in 1877 in the village of Gomadandi in Chattogram. He improvised songs in poetic contests in Kolkata and its outskirts in the eighteenth and the nineteenth centuries. He composed about 350 songs during his lifetime.
Mohsin Hossain spoke on folk bard Bijoy Sarker.
‘Folk bards like Bijoy Sarker had greatly enriched our folk music scene. Now it is up to us to preserve their creations,’ said Mohsin Hossain.
Bijoy Sarker was born at Dumdi village under Narail sadar upazila on February 20 in 1903 and died at Keutia in Kolkata on December 4, 1985. He penned and composed 1,800 songs in different folk genres like jari, sari, kirtan, bhajan, bhatiali which endeared him to thousands. He was posthumously awarded Ekushey Padak in 2013.
Tapan Bagchi discussed about life and works of Radharaman Dutt.
‘Radharaman Dutt was one of greatest folk bards who ever lived. He wrote and composed thousands of songs, which are still extremely popular among music lovers,’ said Tapan Bagchi.
Radharaman Dutt, the influential Sylheti dhamail music composer and lyricist, was born on May 25, 1833 in the village of Keshabpur in Jagannathpur in Sunamganj. He was a singer-composer- lyricist, who wrote and composed over 2,000 songs. He is considered to be the father of dhamal songs.
The discussion was followed by presentations of songs written by the four legendary bards. The performers were Syed Jaber Sarwar, Sardar Hirok Raja, Suchitra Rani Shutrodhar, Munir Baula and Chandana Mazamdar.
The reminiscence programme continued till July 4.

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