[Assam] Great is the land of Assam for nurturing so many mellifluous voices.

Pradip Kumar Datta pradip200 at yahoo.com
Tue May 15 02:23:21 PDT 2007

          Uncut gems to dazzling jewels
- Mumbai-based guru finds Assam a storehouse of raw talent     Idol Chat  Telegraph India      Voice of India Debojit Saha writes about his experiences at a workshop for budding singers... 
  It has always been said that as far as music is concerned, Assam is a storehouse of raw talent. The only thing lacking is proper grooming. A bit of polishing is all it takes to turn these uncut gems into shining jewels. 
  The music workshops conducted by Mumbai-based Pandit Askaran Sharma in Guwahati and Silchar amply attest to this fact.
  Panditji has been my guru ever since I set foot in Mumbai to carve out a career in the Bollywood music industry. 
  So impressed was guruji with the talent pool in the state that he said, “Great is the land of Assam for nurturing so many mellifluous voices.”
  For 10 days, guruji taught nearly 200 students all the nuances of singing — mainly playback singing. 
  The workshops began with slokas and kirtans — and then guruji went on to educate the students on various styles of rendition.
  It was certainly an experience of a lifetime for the budding singers to be groomed by a teacher who has coached Sunidhi Chauhan and Richaa Sharma. 
  And when I say “budding” singers, let me mention that one participant was as young as four years old.
  We had wanted to hold the workshops for a longer period, but there were constraints owing to which we had to restrict it to a brief session. 
  And I really felt bad for having to say no to so many singers who wanted to participate. Now, after the mega success of the workshops, we have been flooded with requests to conduct more such sessions. 
  I am eager to do so. But I need the help of music lovers of Assam. Otherwise, it is hard to conduct workshops of such magnitude on my own.
  My wife Vandana, who was the brain behind the workshop, and I are trying to organise a similar workshop in my homeland.
  The workshop culminated in a Rabindra Jayanti function at Rabindra Bhawan in Guwahati where all the participants sang with guruji. 
  It was really unique to listen to a group of almost 200 singers croon in unison.
  I, too, performed at the show, and was humbled once again by the adulation I received. 

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