Yesterday, I was lucky enough to be invited to a flute concert by the dedicated sisters Suchismita and Debopriya Chatterjee. It was a fitting concert as 8th March is celebrated as the International Women Day. The concert was held in the Amaltus Hall of India Habitat Center, Lodhi Road, Delhi, and was a part of the HCL concert series being brought by HCL Infosystems Ltd.
I was accompanied by my friend Sukhchain and we were (for the first time) comfortably early in the concert.
The flute duo is distinguished because of their tutelage—they are the disciples of my favorite and renowned flute player Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasia. What else can you expect when you have attended his concert in open during a celebrated night and got a chance to listen to his disciples? Undoubtedly, I could notice the marks of his teaching in their style (even in the outlook of Debopriya!).
The sisters started the concert with Raga Yaman, developing the Alapa, Jor, Jhala and then moving to the Gati part where the a composition was first rendered in Jhap Taal and then in Teen Taal. The duo was accompanied on Tabla by Durjai Bhoumik, who ably supported the lovely rendition of Raga Yaman. The Tabla player moved into his element as the concert moved. It was lovely indeed to listen to him also. I know my friend Sukhchain liked Teen Taal and when the rendition moved to that part, he became more involved and active.
As I noticed the nuances of their playing style, I could notice that Suchismita was bubbly in her presence while Debopriya was experimental in presentation. Suchismita presented the variety of the Raga while Debopriya delivered electric effects (if I could say so) to it.
After the Raga, they ended the concert with a short Dhun in Raga Pahadi, which is very famous with Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasia, who often ends his concerts with it. Obviously, Pahadi, being catchy, picks with the audience quickly. The concert began at 7:30 and lasted for around an hour.
To sum up, I would say that it was worthwhile to travel from Gurgaon to Delhi for the concert. I had heard first about Debopriya around 9 years ago when she and Tabla Princess Rimpa Siva accompanied Panditji on a concert in London. I was in the 2nd year of my engineering studies and wondered if I could ever meet them. Later, I got connected to Suchismita also through Facebook and came to know about this concert. So, it happened yesterday.
It was after more than a year that I attended a concert—I would say, it was simply beautiful. The finer aspects of flute the sisters displayed clearly showed where they came from: The living legend of Bansuri.
As a student, nobody can ask more to learn from Panditji, so, wishing these sisters luck is perhaps of no use—they already have it. I would wish them that they continue the legacy of their Guru and keep inspiring others to tune themselves to the finer qualities of classical music that can bring a lot of transformation in the hearts.
I wish the sisters God’s love and grace!