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Music maestro Prabha Atre honoured with 30th Punyabhushan award

Dr Atre was awarded Rs 1 lakh with a memento depicting the gram daivait and a gold plated plaque showing young Shivaji tilling the land. 

pune Updated: Apr 20, 2018 15:05 IST
Prachi Bari
Prachi Bari
Hindustan Times, Pune
prabha atre,punyabhushan,padmavibhushan
Prabha Atre felicitated with Punyabhushan award by (from L) Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasia and Pandit Shivkumar Sharma in the city on Thursday. (HT Photo)

Kirana Gharana vocalist Padma Vibhushan Dr Prabha Atre was awarded the 30th Punyabhushan award by 'Punyabhushan Foundation' (Tridal, Pune) at Balgandharva Rang Mandir on Thursday. She is the fourth woman to receive the prestigious award after physician Banu Coyaji, social activist Nirmala Purandare and eminent Kathak dancer Rohini Bhate.

The award was presented by Pandit Shivkumar Sharma (renowned santoor player), Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasia (famous flute player) and Ustad Amjad Ali Khan. Vinay Sahastrabuddhe, chairman, Indian council for cultural relations and Rajya Sabha MP presided over the event attended by prominent people from all walks of life.

Dr Atre was awarded Rs 1 lakh with a memento depicting the gram daivait and a gold plated plaque showing young Shivaji tilling the land.

Besides the award, six freedom fighters, Raghunath Gangaram Lakeshree Furbu Rindall, Sandeep Bajirao Ukirde, Vineeta Ashok Kamte (widow of Ashok Kamte), Dinadayal Verma, and Prahlad Krishnarao Rebhe were honoured by Sahastrabuddhe.

Mayor Mukta Tilak, Aayan Ali Bangash and industrialist Gajendra Pawar were present on the occasion.

In his video message, the selection committee, under the chairman of the selection committee Padma Vibhushan Raghunath Mashelkar said, “It is sheer coincidence that the first Punyabhushan was awarded to pandit Bhimsen Joshi and the 30th award is awarded to Dr Prabha Atre following the tradition of Sawai Gandharva Music festival.”

Dr Atre said, “It is the music and listeners who have given me an identity, for which I am thankful. I have always thought of a different way of presenting music, for which I am grateful to my gurus Sureshbabu Mane, Hirabai Badodekar and Kirana Gharana. Though I do not belong to a musical family, I feel that music education should be taught in totality. It is time to let go of orthodox rituals of singing ragas at particular time, instead look for a scientific presentation of the raga.” Atre is keen on opening an educational gurukul with modern thoughts.

Later Hariprasad Chaurasia, Ustad Amjad Ali Khan and Pandit Shiv Kumar Sharma shared their anecdotes about Atre. Chaurasia said, “I always followed Atre’s versatility in music. This programme was indeed a prestigious one and I feel I should be reborn in Maharashtra which is deeply rooted in music.”

Sharma said, “I have known Atre for 50 years when I played table to her singing on Jammu Radio station. Atre is the point which is now an ocean of music and knowledge.”

Amjad Ali Khan went on to state that Atre’s music has spread happiness to every person in this country. “Her mastery over Khayal and Thumri is one of the unique characteristics of her singing.”

Sahastrabuddhe said, “Atre is known for both analysis of music as well as performing it, which in itself is a unique thing. She is very down to earth and has managed to bring all the gharanas together instead of only promoting Kirana Gharana.”

Satish Desai, founder, Punyabhushan Foundation, shared the legacy of 30 years of Punyabhushan award in his welcome speech.

First Published: Apr 20, 2018 14:36 IST