The ITC-SRA Homecoming Festival ,December 9-11, 2011
The Homecoming Festival 2011 that took place between December 9 through December 11, was a great success. It was an opportunity for all of us to renew old bonds and create new ones.
While those who came in from outside Kolkata were here for all the 3 days, we really missed those scholars who could not come or were not able to come in every day. The occasion was a wonderful celebration of bonding, bringing together the SRA family, both past members and present.
The Academy and its verdant lawns, brightly decorated for the event, looked festive and resplendent; the atmosphere was palpable with nostalgia and expectation. Warmth, hugs, merriment, excited chatter or just quiet reflective moments were the order of the day. The morning session of the first day was devoted to welcoming our past scholars, presenting the invitees with mementos and a fun "ice breaking" session. The remaining sesions over the remaining two and a half days were devoted to performances. We had about 20 past scholars who finally performed over the 5 sessions. The afternoons were reserved for "Adda" - discussions and group exercises - which proved to be very fruitful. What the Academy can do for its past scholars and what they could do for us was deliberated over in great detail. The last afternoon also had Pandit Arvind Parikh talking to the students about Guru Shishya Parampara and his days as a disciple of Ustad Vilayat Hussain Khan. We also had a post dinner adda on the first day where Mr Mathur, Executive Director spoke of his vision for SRA followed by Pandit Vijay Kichlu, SRA's first Executive Director , who spoke of the initial days of SRA.
Any institution, including ITC SRA, is built by its people. Keenly aware of the dedication that our former scholars have brought to the cause of Hindustani Classical Music and grateful for the role we know that each and everyone of our former scholars has played, as an ambassador of our Academy, for the first time, SRA has invited scholars to select convenient dates for its Saturday Recital performances. Selections for our Mangaldeep (mini) and other Sammelans would also be part of our annual plan.
In joining hands with all the members if its family, SRA looks forward to creating not only a lasting emotional bond, but the foundation of a strong relationship between the Academy and past scholar that will yield rich dividends not just to the individual but to the cause of the Academy and that of Indian Classical Music.