Aditya Vikram Birla Kala Shikhar Puraskars bestowed up Pt. Hari Prasad Chaurasia

Mumbai, Nov 24 (FN Agency) Renowned flautist and music director Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasia was conferred the ‘Aditya Vikram Birla Kala Shikhar Puraskar’ for his contributions to music and catapulting it on the global arena, officials said here on Friday. Addressing the august gathering at the glittering 27th Sangit Kala Kendra’s Awards held on 23rd of November, Rajashreeji Birla, President of the Sangit Kala Kendra in her welcome address, traced the genesis of the Sangit Kala Kendra. Birla mentioned that, Aditya Birla made an indispensable contribution, not only to the nation by propelling it on the global stage, but also his patronage of the preforming arts, with elegance. Thus was SKK born over 50 years ago. Giving glimpses of the late Aditya Birla’s love for music, which evolved during his MIT days, Birla mentioned that Harry Belafonte, the erstwhile American singer was his hero.

He modelled on his versatility. The guitar was Birla’s favourite instrument for relaxation. So, when he conceptualized the Sangit Kala Kendra, he decided that instrumental music would form an integral part. This year instrumental music has been the theme of the SKK awards. The Sangit Kala Kendra has immortalized glorious moments of Aditya Birla’s life. The SKK Awards celebrate the memory of its visionary founder. The coveted Aditya Vikram Birla Kala Shikhar Puraskar, its premier award was conferred upon Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia by Birla. He is the “doyen of the bansuri, whose status as a flautist is unmatchable”, said Birla. Earlier luminaries upon whom the Kala Shikar Puraskars were bestowed included renowned instrumentalists viz. Ustad Zakir Hussian, Pt. Shivkumar Sharma, Pt. Vijay Raghav Rao and Pt. Ram Narayan. Two promising artists – Ojas Adhiya, the tabla player and Sabir Khan, the sarangi artist, were honoured with the Aditya Vikram Birla Kala Kiran Puraskars. The renowned singer Kavita Krishnamurthy was the Chief Guest. Shekhar Sen, Rahul Sharma, Dr. Suvarnalata Rao and Ronu Majumdar comprised the exemplary panel of judges, representing the epitome of instrumental music. Most music lovers, including Kumar Mangalam Birla, graced this memorable occasion. An excellent evening of musicians such as Malevo from Argentina, Farhan Akhtar and Sunidhi Chauhan, had the audience rock-on.