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Audio | RABINDROMOYEE - A Special Songs & Narration Presentation Contrasting the Romance in Chandalika, Shyama & Chandalika

Rabindranath Tagore Hampstead England 1912

Image via Wikipedia

Washington, DC, September 10, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Commemorating the 150th birth anniversary of Rabindranath Thakur, Shri Barid Baran wrote "Rabindramoyee" which depicts the comparison of THREE very popular and well known female characters created by Rabindranath - SHYAMA, CHITRANGADA and PRAKRITI (in CHANDALIKA).

The similarity between these characters is that they wanted their loved ones desperately. But the dissimilarity lies in the ways they opted to pursue their loved ones and the final outcome of their love.

Shyama sacrificed the life of a young paramour of hers in order to save Bajrasen from death as she was infatuated with him and wanted him at any cost.

Chitrangada, the only child of the king and the one to inherit the throne, falls in love with Arjun, the third of the five Pandava Brothers in the Mahabharata. But after Arjun refused her as she was not an attractive woman. She changed her appearance by the boon of Kamdev in order to reach her goal.

Prakriti was shunned by everyone around her as she was born to a lower-caste untouchable family. Her life changed when Ananda, a buddhist monk asked for water from her and made her understand that she is as human as everyone in the world. Prakriti felt re-born as a human being and fell in love with him.

However, the outcome of their love was different also.

In spite of everything Shyama did to get her love, Bajrasen left her, when he came to know about the sacrifice of life in order to save him.

After changing her appearance Chitrangada did win herself Arjun, but Arjun being a warrior looked for Chitrangada, the warrior and she came back to her original form.

Prakriti wanted Ananda and even tried her mother's magic powers to obtain him. But at the end of the day he was a monk, a hermit - a saint who had no attraction for material matters.

Listen to our special presentation - a Washington Bangla Radio exclusive.



Tanmayee Banerjee - Award Winning Bengali Singer from London | WBRi Feature

[Tanmayee Banerjee]Washington, DC, Sept 13, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Born in North Calcutta in early 1980, Tanmayee Banerjee grew up in Konnagar in Hooghly district of West Bengal. Her parents tell her even before she was brought home from the hospital after her birth, a brand new harmonium was bought by her paternal aunts with a desire to give her lessons in music! Just as it is difficult to remember the early days of one's life before learning to talk or even walk, Tanmayee cannot remember the days when she did not sing.

Initially a music teacher who lived in her neighbourhood was appointed to give her lessons in Classical music. Tanmayee remembers taking her first music examinations, practical and theoretical, when she was a mere first grade student. It was an ordeal more for her mother than for her. Her mother had to go through the syllabus, read and understand the various musical terms and their definitions, learn how to write the ‘taals’ with proper scansion, and teach them to her. She had to make Tanmayee practice writing them a number of times before the exam.

Read all about the young singer and listen to her online via Washington Bangla Radio On-Demand Audio Broadcast Service.



Interview: Director Arunava Khasnobis on Bengali Movie "Bhalobasha Off Route E" & His Background and Future Plans in Tollywood

Arunabha KhasnobisWashington DC, Sep 9, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Film-maker Arunava Khasnobis chats with Esha Basu Roy about his journey into Tollywood, the recent invigoration of Bengali film and his upcoming films, and of course, his debut Bengali feature film "Bhalobasha Off Route-ey".

Arunava credits his parents, both of whom are creative arts and music enthusiasts and performers, and his upbringing for his foray into the world of film-making. His father introduced him to the world of cinema early on - he watched Ray's Pather Panchali multiple times at various stages of his life starting at 8.

Arunava also took to creative writing as a kid, and is a prolific writer. His introduction to direction was accidental - he has been acting live on stage in theater productions, and once in his early days, the director of such a production fell sick and Arunava was tasked with directing that play.

Arunava thus discovered his knack for direction. Subsequently, he would grab his handy-cam and start making short films with his buddies helping him, learning from his mistakes in the field as there was little scope of formal training in film-making in the town of Siliguri where he grew up.

Arriving in the metropolis of Calcutta to earn a living, Arunava continued to explore film-making. With the support of his good friend and the powerful actor Rudranil Ghosh (who recently delivered a spectacular performance in Chaplin (Bengali, 2011) which Sounak Mukhopadhyay reviewed in this post) and keen observation of films being made on the floor, he was ready to make his own full-length Bangla feature film. In a way, says Arunava, this experimental hands-on knowledge worked well for him, since he is free of restrictions imposed by formal training.

Arunava is one of the, if not the, youngest film-maker in Calcutta's Tollywood Bengali film industry today. He dwells upon the recent sea-change in the quality and audience viewership of Bengali films ushered in by a slew of young film-makers with fresh ideas and techniques. As you know, Srijit Mukherji (interview) and a bunch of new film-makers broke through stagnated Bengali cinema with sparkling next-generation movies. Today, a majority of successful Bengali films are being made by the new crop of writers and directors. Arunava notes that this phenomenon has actually started in Mumbai's Bollywood industry earlier than Kolkata, with film-makers like Anurag Kashyap and Dibakar Banerjee ushering in the change.

Bhalobasha Off Route Ay - Bengali Movie PosterBhalobasa Off Route-Ey is primarily an entertaining film with a lot to do with football (soccer). It is set in an imaginary village of Chandiphanta and is the story of two big-city boys connecting with local girls and some incidents on the soccer field. The film and it's characters border fairy-tale fantasy - the village itself is imagined to be located far from well known routes, thus giving the film it's title.

The star cast of Bhalobasha Off Route-Ay includes Rahul, Saswata Chatterjee, Rudranil Ghosh, Abhiraj, Kharaj Mukherjee, Kanchan Mullick, Tanusree Chakraborty, Parijat, Partha Sarathi Deb, Sudarshana and Padmanabha Dasgupta - the latter is the renowned film writer who acts in the film as well. Unlike many directors, Arunava does not make a cameo appearance in the film and says he did not really want to do that in his first film, but given his acting background, might play roles in his subsequent films.


Interview & Free Song Previews: Arindam of Band KAYA on Hindi album "Kaya - Folk Rockers" & Rabindrasangeet album "Robir Kaya"

Washington, DC, Sep 8, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) As you know, Kaya are one of the leading music groups from Kolkata whose signature Bengali folk-fusion numbers have all been greatly appreciated and successful. In this interview, Arindam Chattopadhyay, bass guitarist and lyricist of Kaya, chats with Arijit Chakraborty about their latest Bengali album Robir Kaya and their upcoming Hindi album titled Kaya - Folk Rockers. Also listen to free audio song previews from Kaya's new Hindi album.

Kaya Folk Rockers Album Cover
Kaya Folk Rockers Album Cover (Click to zoom in)

Free audio sample TRACKLIST
bin tere.mp3
dhundne chala.mp3
janeja.mp3
khwabo ka.mp3
nai subha.mp3
naiya re.mp3
palko tale.mp3

Kaya have the distinction of being the first band from Kolkata launching a Hindi album at the national level in India. The album consists of seven original songs composed by Kaya, and is scheduled for a September launch in Kolkata followed by a pan-India launch in October. Arindam describes the work Kaya have done in this album - there is, of course, Bengali folk influence, along with which Kaya have experimented with diverse genres like Sufi and Rajasthani and various regional folk music of India. Kaya have always been strong in folk-rock fusion, and it is natural for them to expand into a greater Indian context to try to reach a larger audience across India. In addition to Archan, Kaya Folk Rockers also features vocals by Kaushik and Mukesh.

Robir Kaya and Kaya Folk Rockers are released by Purple Music whose albums can be downloaded in MP3 udio songs format from WBRi Digital Download Service here »


Kolkata Bangla Band DESTINY - Songs & Interview with Band Members | WBRi Exclusive Feature

Destiny

(A Moment Of Uncertainty)


Interview with the members of Bangla Band Destiny

Destiny was formed in 2006 when Archan and Sanjay started jamming. In those days that was mere fun for those guys. Then Suman joined the band as a supporting guitar player. He introduced Ayan, and subsequently Subhomoy also joined the band - thus forming Destiny. The band strives to create a new genre of music by fusing progressive with neo-classical melody-based compositions.


Click play to listen to songs by Destiny

Destiny are:

Destiny Performing Live on StageSuman Sarkar (Vocals & Guitars)

The most versatile member of the band who writes as well as frames the compositions single-handedly. Started his music career as a vocalist but now mastered  the guitar as well tremendously. Responsible for all the heavy riffs as well as few solo sections too.

Archan Mukherjee (Guitars)

Considered to be the best guy of the band (both in nature as well as talent in playing guitar solos). Started playing the guitar in school, now well-known as one of the most versatile guitarists across all genres. Whether its neo-classical or heavy-metal or plain progressive, this guy can simply thrash any competition with his overall guitaring abilities!

Subhomoy Saha (Keys & Vocals)

The coolest guy of the community. Though he plays keyboards, he can also set the stage on fire with his vocal abilities  (mostly classical based songs)! Subhomoy has the ability to fuse melody solo sections along with hard riff structures. He can also play  guitars to a large extent.

Ayan Chandra (Bass Guitars & supporting vocals)

The most notorious guy of the band. Started playing Bass in high school. One of the most appreciated bassists specially in inter-collegiate competitions. When most people used to think that bass players are just a support to the band, this guy showed them what bass players are specially when it comes to playing solos & that too of all genres!

Sanjay Gupta (Drums & Percussion)

The most interesting as well as the senior-most member of the band. He also manages the band. One of the most rocking drum players of today's Kolkata music circle. Tremendous ability to vary rhythm & tempo & thus produce some new patterns which eventually lead to genuine progressive numbers!


Interview: A Musical Tête à Tête With Singer-Composer JOY SARKAR (Video)

By Soumitra Talukdar

Editor's Note: You may also remember our first interview with Joy Sarkar around the time of the release of Riingo's Bengali film "Jodi Ekdin" featuring music directed by him available here. We also recently published a musical interview with Lopamudra Mitra where Joy also appears extempore and impromptu posted here.

Joy Sarkar Live on Washington Bangla Radio USACalcutta, Aug 25, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) We continue our series of musical interview with Soumitra Talukdar chatting up singer-composer and Music Director Joy Sarkar at his residence in an informal setting. Joy talks about his career in music and breaks spontaneously into singing, strumming his guitar, over the course of this video interview !

Joy says, “My father Sudhin Sarkar is a singer and my mother, Kalyani Sarkar never forgot to hum a tune when she made our breakfast. They are the reason why I am doing, what I am doing today. I probably started recognising notes before I learned Bangla letters. It was like colour… the world seemed to be made up of little musical notes that wafted in the air. Music was not just a part of the world that I acknowledged to be mine… it was the world!"



Powerman Mc New Single Doggs Who Chase Cats Feat. SPI & Haveknot

Powerman MC Dogs That Chase The Cats Cover ArtWashington, DC, Aug 22, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Powerman MC (Kenneth L. Gibbs Sr.) has featured on music CD’s and Mix tapes with Artists such as Snoop Dogg, Prince, Havoc Razor, Dr. Dre, Eminem, D12, Joski, DJ Quick, Brown Stone, Waren G, Toy Capone, Nate Dogg, Ice Cube, lil’rob, SPI, Insinc, Kurupt, and many others. Powerman has hosted the show Dance hall Party from 1991 to 1993 in East LA on Buena cable and appeared on the Live in color tv show for over a decade the show aired in over 11 different states for over a decade.

Download Doggs that Chase Cats by Powerman MC in MP3 format (Amazon.com) >

Powerman MC has been featured on Hip-Hop & R&B hit mix tapes and CD’s Nationwide and overseas from California to Atlanta, from Seattle Washington to Florida, also number one Artist in Japan for two months in 2002.



Interview: Music Director Debashish Raychaudhuri on AMAR JABAR BELATE Audio CD Release on Tagore's 70th Death Anniversary

By Arijit Chakraborty

Editor's Notes: The Bengali Rabindrasangeet and Narration audio CD release "Amar Jabar Belatey" is a collage that traces the final few days of the life of Rabindranath Tagore, his endurance of the agony and his passing out of existance on baishe srabon by juxtaposing it with his death-defying creations in the forms of poems, songs, words and images. The CD was released on the 70th death anniversary of Tagore by Sravasti (www.sravastiworld.com). Concept, script, narration and direction are by Chaitali Dasgupta - you have already heard our interview with Chaitali in this post. Debashish Raychaudhuri is the music director of the remarkable album - in this audio interview that you can listen to online by pressing the Play button in the player above, Arijit Chakraborty chats with Debashish about the album and about Tagore and his works.

You can also listen to clips from the album "Amar Jabar Belate" in this post.

Washington, DC, Aug 14, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Debashish Raychaudhuri, a professor of English language in University of Kolkata, is a very well known personality in the world of Rabindra Sangeet in Kolkata and is engaged in various research work regarding Rabindranath Tagore, whose 150th birth anniversary is being celebrated all over the world. Debashish was at the helm of the music direction in the production AMAR JABAR BELATE regarding the concept of death expressed by Rabindranath in his creations and its contrast with the pain and agony the poet himself faced during his last days.

Amar Jabar Belaye

The music and recitation CD was released in Kolkata on August 8, 2011, coinciding with "Baishe Shrabon" as per the Bengali calender, the day Rabindranath passed away. 2011 marks the 70th anniversary of the bard's death.



Abhijit Basu: Bengali Film Playback Singer, Music Director, Composer and Folk Songs Researcher & Performer - Interview Feature

Abhijit BasuWashington DC, Aug 14, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Paromita Biswas, an accomplished singer herself who lives here, caught up and recorded this musical video interview with the well-known folk-songs researcher, singer of folk and Bengali Film songs, music director and composer Abhijit Basu (Bose) who was visiting DC at the time.

Listen to the musician as he chats about his background and experience and sings extempore.

Bengali Films (Click Here to Order DVD in USA & Canada »)
Kntatar, Directed by:- Bappaditya Bandhopadhyay
Kaal, Directed by:- Bappaditya Bandhopadhyay
Houseful, Directed by:- Bappaditya Bandhopadhyay
Eka Eka, Directed by:- Tapas Majumdar
Hello Kolkata Kemon Acho, Directed by:- Monoj Michigan
Kagojer Bou, Directed by:- Bappaditya Bandhopadhyay
Chhatrak , Directed by VIMUKTI JAY SUNDERE


Interview: Actress Tanusree Chakraborty On Bengali Films Uro Chithi, Bhalobasha Off Route E, Bedroom & her Tollywood Experience

By Supratim Sanyal
Hosted By: Esha Basu Roy

Tollywood Actress Tanushree ChakrabortyWashington, DC, Aug 12, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) A regular Kolkata girl, Bengali actress Tanushree Chakraborty studied at Kamala Girls' High on Southern Avenue and subsequently graduated with a Bachelor's degree with Honors in Political Science from Basanti Devi College in Gariahat. Her entry into modelling was coincidental ("kaktaliyo") - after numerous appearances in advertisements in Kolkata and Mumbai and a number of appearances in TV shows, she started to pursue her true inner calling of acting. She is appearing in one of the lead roles in Bengali feature film "UROCHITHI" which opens in theaters in West Bengal today. Next up for release are her films "BHALOBASHA OFF ROUTE E" and BEDROOM.

Esha Basu Roy caught up with the talented actress in this audio interview to chat about her background, career, personal and professional goals and, of course, her films.

After successfully working as a model for a short while, Tanushree transitioned into a career in acting with a multi-month assignment in a TV serial directed by Jishu Dasgupta who also coached her on a lot of the intricacies of the art of acting. She subsequently moved over to the Tollywood film industry.

Tollywood Actress Tanushree ChakrabortyTanushree steps into the shoes of "Lilette" in Uro Chithi directed by Kamaleshwar Mukherjee (interview). Lilette, a Christian girl, suffers from depression - one of the reasons being her parents are separated (watch the film to find out the other reasons). Writer-director Kamaleshwar Mukherjee has portrayed the male lead character of Aniket, played by Indraneil Sengupta (interview) as passing through various phases as he deletes SMS text messages from his cell phone. In one of these phases, Lilette becomes the "other woman" who brings in a whiff of freshness in the otherwise mundane corporate and family life of married-with-children Aniket. Crisis strikes Lilette's and Aniket's life, not necessarily caused by their relationship. What happens after to Lilette and how Aniket's life changes is to be seen in the film.

Uro Chiti also stars Anjan Dutta (interview), Rachita Chauhan (Bhattacharya) (interview), Locket Chatterjee (interview), Sreelekha Mitra (interview), Bishwanath Basu, Rajatava Dutta, Rudranil Ghosh (interview), Reshmi Ghosh (interview), Sudipta Chakraborty, Biswajit, Debapratim, Sashwata, Kaushik and others. Music is by Debojyoti Mishra (interview) and the film songs are performed by Shreya Ghoshal, Monali Thakur, Rupam Islam, Shilpa Rao and Aninda Chatterjee.

After Urochithi, Tanusree is appearing in Arunabha Khasnobis' forthcoming flick "BHALOBASHA OFF ROUTE-E" co-starring Rahul, Saswata Chatterjee, Rudranil Ghosh, Kanchan Mallik, Abhiraj (interview), Kharaj Mukherjee (interview), Parijat (interview), Padmanava Dasgupta, Partha Sarathi Deb etc. The film is expected to have a release date around Durga Puja. Tanushree portrays Ragini - a smart girl from rural Bengal who is caring in nature but challenges conventional social norms. The actress takes on the look of a quintessential village girl of Bengal in this film.

After Bhalobasha Off Route E, Tanusree's next movie expected to release later this year is Mainak Bhaumik's BEDROOM with Abir Chatterjee (interview), Paoli Dam, Parno Mitra (interview), Rahul, Rudranil Ghosh, Anubrata, Ushasie and others. In BEDROOM, Tanushree plays Tanisha, a girl who is nothing like Ragini! Tanushree believes that the look she has taken on to play Tanisha has not been tried before on any Indian actress before - she talks about a lot of experimentation done with her hair and looks for this role. Tanisha is a self-destructive girl - a strange woman addicted to cigerretes and narcotics who sells sex for money, a character that actually drove Tanushree to read up on the minds of such women to play her role better. Tanushree says BEDROOM is a woman-centric film, and features an unheard-of extent of experimentation with the type of woman portrayed, who is also the female protagonist.

Tollywood Actress Tanushree ChakrabortyAsked what qualities she would look for in her real-life partner, Tanushree says he should be a great friend whom she can talk with openly with no reservations all her life as she grows old.

With three major film releases already in the immediate pipeline, film-lovers are surely going to have a great time watching Tanusree Chakraborty in many more films over the coming years.


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