I was fortunate to attend the live performance by the legend thanks to Prasad Kunisetty. The event was organized by Association for India’s Development(AID), a non-profit movement that supports grassroot development in India. Here at the event, sponsorships were sought for providing solar lanterns to non-electrified rural homes in Central India
The mastery that Pt. Chaurasia has over the Bamboo Flute (bansuri) was easily noticeable even by novice listeners like me as he enthralled the filled to capacity and sprawling auditorium on this Fall evening. Music is known to produce a dopamine rush to the brain and he did not disappoint. What an evening!
Here is a short clip of him from youtube playing Raag Mian Ki Malhar to give you an idea of his music that enveloped us.
As a child and teenager, I had heard him on All India Radio and Doordarshan but did not pay much attention as I was then into disco and fast tapping music and found his flute to be soporific and too calming. As I grew older and a bit wiser, I realized the soothing and uplifting effect of his music. To be able to finally attend a live performance by him was truly a heaven sent opportunity.
Pt. Chaurasia had also teamed up with Santoor legend Pt. Shivkumar Sharma to give memorable music to Bollywood movies like Silsila, Chandni, Lamhe etc.,
You can sense his humility when he says, “I never forget that I started off as a stenographer and whatever I have achieved is more than enough for me. I am a very ordinary person but I am happy in life. That’s all that matters.”