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Hindustani classical vocalist Kishori Amonkar passes away at 84, funeral at Shivaji Park today

Kishori Amonkar sang in the Jaipur gharana style, with her quintessential Maharashtrian and Goan lehja.

music Updated: Apr 04, 2017 18:06 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
Kishori Amonkar,Hindustani Classical,Jaipur gharana
Kishori Amonkar passed away at the age of 84 in Mumbai.(All India Radio Twitter)

Padma Vibhushan recipient classical singer Kishori Amonkar passed away at the age of 84 at her house in Mumbai on Monday evening. One of the finest Hindustani classical singers, Amonkar was ailing for a while, said sources.

Amonkar’s body has been kept at Ravindra Natya Mandir in Prabhadevi for people to pay their last respects.

Members of Kishori Amonkar’s family at Ravindra Natya Mandir in Prabhadevi on Tuesday. (Anshuman Poyrekar/Hindustan times.)

The funeral will be held at the Shivaji Park crematorium on Tuesday evening. She is survived by two sons and grandchildren. In her career spanning seven decades, she was revered as ‘Gaan-Saraswati’.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed grief on Twitter. “Demise of Kishori Amonkar is an irreparable loss to Indian classical music. Deeply pained by her demise. May her soul rest in peace,” he tweeted.

Modi also tweeted a link to a documentary film on Kishori Amonkar, Bhinna Shadja, with the caption, ‘The works of Kishori Amonkar will always remain popular among people for years to come.’

Mourners attend Kishori Amonkar's funeral at Ravindra Natya Mandir in Mumbai on Tuesday. (Anshuman Poyrekar/HT Photo)

Stating that the field of Indian classical music has lost one of the most luminous stars, governor of Maharashtra CH Vidyasagar Rao in his tribute, said, “Smt Kishori Amonkar was a great vocalist gifted with a divine voice. She belonged to the small league of vocalists who took Hindustani classical music to great heights. While assiduously retaining the essence of her classical tradition, she welcomed innovative ideas. A great guru herself, Kishori Tai passed on the knowledge she acquired through years of dedication to her disciples.”

Condolences poured in from Bollywood fraternity as well. Noted actor Shabana Azmi tweeted, “What a loss... Have been her ardent fan and consider myself fortunate to have lived in a time I could hear Kishori Amonkar sing.”

Theatre and film director Vijaya Mehta talks to Nandani Bedekar, a student of Kishori Amonkar, at the Ravindra Natya Mandir. (HT)

Born on April 10, 1932 to Madhavdas Bhatiya and Mogubai Kurdikar, a well-known classical vocalist, she learned music under Ustad Alladiya Khan Saheb and Kesarbai Kerkar.

Amonkar sang in the Jaipur gharana style, with her quintessential Maharashtrian and Goan lehja. Her training in music began under her mother. She studied at Elphinstone College.

Known to have acquired her own style in emphasising the emotional content of music, Amonkar imbibed the nuances of the much-feared Jaipur-Atrauli gharana.

She was a recipient of the Rashtrapati Award, Sangeet Natak Akademi Award and Sangeet Samragni Award, among others.

Students of Kishori Amonkar at Ravindra Natya Mandir. (Anshuman Poyrekar/HT)

In a tweet, Bharat Ratna awardee Lata Mangeshkar said, “Mujhe abhi abhi pata chala ki mahan shastriya gayika Kishori amonkar ji ka swargwas hua, ye sunke mujhe bahut dukh hua. Wo ek asaadharan gayika thi.Unke jaane se shastriya sangeet jagat ki bahut haani hui hai... (I have just heard that the legendary classical singer Kishori Amonkarji has passed away. I am saddened. She was a phenomenal singer. Her passing is a big loss to music).”

First Published: Apr 04, 2017 00:53 IST