Radharaman Utsab '08 at TSC | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, April 03, 2008 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, April 03, 2008

Radharaman Utsab '08 at TSC


Artistes perform Dhamail dance at the programme Star

Students United For Research in Musical Activities (SURMA), an organisation devoted to collecting and preserving rural art forms, arranged “Radharaman Utsab '08” to draw attention to the works of the bard Radharaman Dutta (1834-1915) at the TSC Auditorium, Dhaka University (DU) on April 1.
Highlights of the programme were renditions of Radharaman songs and Dhamail dance by the artistes of SURMA and Sunamganj Radharaman Parishad.
An essay titled Radharaman Dutta O Tar Gaan by Saima Ahmed was presented at the programme. The essay briefly addressed Radharaman's works, his devotion to lord Krishna and his message of eternal love. According to the essay, Radharaman was inspired by Shahajiya Vaishnavism. He never learnt music from masters; yet managed to leave behind a legacy of classics that are being rediscovered by contemporary artistes. Krishnaleela Kabyo and Padma Puran are among his notable works.
The essay suggests that Radharaman was also inspired by Sufism, which he expressed through his songs and works. Apparently the bard used to compose songs during prayers.
The essay also says that Dhamail dance, a popular performing art form of the northeastern region, was developed by the bard. Dhamail dance is usually performed at weddings.
Poet Sabir Ahmed Chowdhury and Professor Zaheda Ahmed discussed on the essay. Former finance minister Abul Mal Abdul Muhit was the chief guest at the programme.
Professor Mridul Kanti Chakravarty, chairman, Department of Music and Drama, DU and director of SURMA presided over the programme. Professor Chakravarty said, "So far we have been able to collect nearly two thousand songs of Radharaman but we are speculating there are more." Professor Chakravarty has been doing a research on Radharaman for several years.
Over the last hundred years, Radharaman's songs have become an integral part of the culture and traditions of the northeastern Bangladesh. Members of SURMA and Sunamganj Radharaman Parishad rendered some of the classics written and composed by the bard including Bhramar koiyyo giya, Prano shokhirey oi shon kadambo toley, Kalaye pranti nilo, Karey dekhabo moner dukkho and Amar bondhu doyamoy at the programme.
Artistes of the two organisations also performed Dhamail dance.

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