On-Demand Audio Broadcast / Podcast

Interview:Ranadeep Sarkar on Bengali Horror-Suspense Thriller THE UNKNOWN (2011) & Background Experience with Tollywood Movies

[Bengali Film-Maker Ranadeep]Washington DC, June 3, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Ananya Paul catches up in this audio interview with Ranadeep Sarkar who also goes by the name Rann and is one of the youngest film-makers from Kolkata we have had the opportunity to have as a guest on WBRi. Ranadeep's first independently directed short film "The Unknown" will premiere in Kolkata on June 6, 2011 at 4:30 PM at Max Mueller Bhavan. "The Unknown" is a modern suspense-horror thriller made with family-viewing in mind and, as you will hear Ranadeep describe, is likely to be the precursor to a full-length Bengali feature film around a similar theme that Ranadeep wants to make.

Interview: Julie Banerjee Mehta - Expert Author Journalist & Translator of Pleiades Theater Toronto's "The Post Office"

[The Post Office]DEATH IS NOT THE END BUT THE BEGINNING : This aspect of Eastern Philosophy attracted John Van Burek - director of the theater group at Pleiades Theater in Toronto, and he wanted someone to translate "Dak Ghar" ( ডাকঘর ) written by Kabiguru Rabindranath Tagore in the year 1911, not only as a part of the celebration of Rabindranath's 150th anniversary, but also to commemorate the centenary of the creation of this play, which Rabindranath Tagore wrote at a time when he faced so many tragedies in his personal life.

Meet Dr. Julie Banerjee Mehta who currently teaches at the Centre for South Asian Studies at the University of Toronto. Her Ph.D. dissertation is entitled "Retrieving Precolonial Identity through the Images of the Divine Feminine in Waterscapes of Postcolonial Fiction" and she is a gold medalist alumna of Jadavpur University, Kolkata where she earned her Master's degree in English Literature.

While having a candid discussion with Arijit Chakraborty in the studio of Washington Bangla Radio from Toronto, Ontario, Canada, she talks about her feelings when she was requested to translate "Dak-Ghar" into English, so that the concept of Tagore can be introduced to a broader section of the Canadian population. 

Suddhashil Chatterjee - Promising North-Indian Classical Instrumental Santoor Player : WBRi Feature

Suddhashil is one of the most promising Santoor exponents of the younger generation. He started his initial training of vocal music from his mother. Later, he started taking his intensive talim of Indian Classical Vocal from Pt. Samaresh Chaudhury. Read all about Suddhasil and listen to his Santoor playing.

Ashes in Flames - The Alt-Rock - Indian Classical Fusion Group from Kolkata: WBRi Feature

Ashed in FlamesKolkata, May 30, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Ashes in Flames are a group of young and talented musicians from Calcutta, India consisting of talented individuals joining hands to make a different music together.It was formed in the year 2009 as an alternative-rock English band, but they approach nearly all genres of music. They now have given a different sound to their music by merging traditional Indian classical bandishes in different Ragas in their soulful original compositions creating a well crafted vocal fusion in their songs. They have released this genre and are still working on this sound. Read all about the promising Kolkata band and listen to their songs online.

Interview: Film-Maker Madhubanti Mukherjee on Her Directorial Debut "60 ML" (Bengali, 2011)

poster: 60 mlCalcutta, May 25, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Once when Madhubanti Mukherjee was in her early teens, her father took her to the theater to watch a Hollywood film, and happened to mention to her that the cinematographer of that film was a woman. Today, Madhubanti is a rapidly upcoming cinematographer herself, and is now directing her own film titled 60 ML which will be released under the banner of Out Of Box Entertainment of Kolkata shortly.

Sumana Bhattacharya - Bangla Kobita Abritti (Bengali Poem Recitation)

Sumana BhattacharyaShudhu kobitar jonno ei jonmo,
Shudhu kobitar jonno kichu khela,
Shudhu kobitar jonno eka hiem sandhyabela bhubon pariya aasa

Sumana Bhattacharya shares with us a few of her recitation recordings. These are also being aired on our live radio channel.

  • Ajike Gohon Kalima by Rabindranath Tagore
  • selections from Amar Durgotsav
  • Bonolata Sen by Jibonanondo Das
  • Bosonto Utsav by Mondakranta Sen
  • Bristhi Pore Tapur Tupur by  Rabindranath Tagore
  • Jibon Debota by Rabindranath Tagore
  • Megh Balikar Jonyo Rupkotha by Joy Goswami
  • Pagol Bashonto by Rabindranath Tagore

Interview: Dr. Debapriya Mallick Urges Non-Resident Bengalis to Get Involved in Re-building West Bengal

Map of West Bengal

Image via Wikipedia

Washington DC, May 24, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Dr. Debapriya Mullick is a greatly respected philanthropist well known for regularly and selflessly volunteering for assistance of the people of West Bengal during times of natural and man-made calamities. A medical doctor himself, he has been involved in establishing various health-care facilities and hospitals across West Bengal and is associated with a number of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) serving people facing various challenges all over the state. Among numerous instances of Dr Mallick jumping in to help, his spontaneous contribution towards assisting the victims after the March 14, 2007 bloodbath at Nandigram and natural disasters like the devastating floods of the Sunderbans after the 2009 hurricane Aila are particularly remarkable.

Dr. Debapriya Mallick is also the elder brother of Jyotipriya Mallick, lawyer and erstwhile Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA), Gaighata, Barasat, West Bengal, now the Minister of Food and Food Supply in the newly elected All India Trinamool Congress (AITMC) government of West Bengal lead by Mamata Banerjee as the Chief Minister.

Patriotism and a desire to serve the country and it's people runs in their family. Their father was the famous freedom fighter Saktipada Mallick.

In this informal chat with Arijit Chakraborty, Dr Mallick talks about how he was operating in a hospital when the firing happened at Nandigram, and he had to leave directly from the operation theater to the region. The journey itself was unpleasant due to derogatory comments being continually made, but eventually Dr Mallick and his team managed to set up camps and start treating almost 4,000 residents injured in police firing and physical abuse. He talks about Sonachura and how they could somehow establish a health-care facility on the 2nd floor of a building housing a bank - a facility which itself came into attack multiple times, including a particularly venomous one on the 10th of November by muscle-men who also destroyed an ambulance as well. This health-center was eventually named "Shahid Smriti Shwastho Kendro" by the local people honoring the martyrs. It took about nine months for things to stabilize to an extent that the team could finally withdraw.

About Singur, Dr Mallick says the challenges were significant there too, but slightly less than Nandigram since Singur is located close to national highway and thus doctors and nurses had easier access.

Dr Mallick also touches upon the challenges immediately after cyclone Aila struck and how it took around two years to approach a sense of normality across the vast number of affected villages and their people. The conversation continues on many other subjects relevant in today's West Bengal - listen to the complete on-demand audio broadcast on Washington Bangla Radio.

Interview: Rishi Kaushik - Bengali Film and TV Actor Talks About Ekhane Akash Neel, Abohoman, Kranti etc. & His Upcoming Films

[Bengali Movie & TV Serial Hero Rishi Kaushik]Calcutta, May 20, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Actor Rishi Kaushik is well-known in Bengal for his role of Ujaan, hero of the popular Star Jalsa Television series “Ekhane Akash Neel”.

After "Ekdin Pratidin", Rishi was offered quite a few roles in Bengali feature films. He has appeared as a rural school teacher Joydeep in Tarun Majumdar's "Chander Bari" (2007) [buy Bengali film DVD in USA], costarring Rituparna Sengupta, Soumitra Chatterjee, Ranjit Mullik, Babul Supriyo, Koel Mullick, Laboni Sarkar, Haradhan Bannerjee, Locket Chatterjee and others with music by Arundhati-Shibaji.

Wanting to experiment, Rishi appeared as the antagonist in Riingo Banerjee's (interview) Kranti (2002) [DVD release] with Jeet, Swastika Mukherjee, Rajesh Sharma, Ashish Vidyarthi, Alaknanda Roy, Bodhisattva Mazumdar, Locket Chatterjee, Biswanath Bose, Raja Chatterjee etc. and music by Riingo himself. His performance in Kranti won him a BFJA Most Promising Actor award.

Rishi has appeared in a well-appreciated role against Ananya Chatterjee in Rituparno Ghosh's Abohoman (Blu-Ray - DVD) along with Dipankar Dey, Riya Sen, Mamata Shankar, Jishu Sengupta etc. featuring music by 21 Grams.

Listen to Rishi Kaushik chat about his background, career, films, TV shows and upcoming projects.

Interview: Tollywood Actress Nusrat Jahan Talks About Bengali Movie "Shatru" Co-Starring Jeet and her Background and Experience

Germantown, MD, May 20, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) She is a quintessential Bengali girl, pursuing her Bacherlor's degree in Commerce. She likes to wear new dresses and walk the ramp and enjoys doing so. One day in 2010 she gathered her confidence and went out to the ramp with the primary goal of having a good time. She ended up winning the Fair One Miss Kolkata crown!

Meet the wonderful young lady Nusrat Jahan as Arijit Chakraborty chats with her on WBRi. Make no mistake - there is hard work, dedication and talent in the humble and polite girl that has carried her to the role of the heroine in her debut feature film - the Tollywood Bengali movie "Shatru". She can hardly believe she has actually completed a film directed by Raj Chakraborty opposite the popular hero Jeet !

Shotru (Bengali, 2011) Poster 1
Shotru (Bengali, 2011) Poster 1
Shotru (Bengali, 2011) Poster 3
Shotru (Bengali, 2011) Poster 3

Interview: Neal Whittle - Author, "HOWZAAAAAT!" - Everything About the Game of Life can be Learned from the Game of Cricket

[Neal Whittle]Washington, DC, May 13, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Neal Whittle, author of Howzaaaaat!, chats with Marian Chakraborty on Washington Bangla Radio from Sydney, Australia. Born in Wimbledon, London, UK to anglo-Indian parents from Hyderabad, India, and living in Sydney from age 11, Whittle naturally has a remarkable insight into cross-cultural diversity at a personal level. A computer technologist by profession, Whittle finally gave in to his heart's call of trying his hand at writing when his mother passed away suddenly, and the result is Howzaaat! - a book that has received rave reviews and a response that is amazing to witness.

Listen to the audio interview.

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