ITC’s association with music began with the ITC Sangeet Sammelan conducted in Delhi in 1971. This Sammelan also instituted a substantial cash award to be given to one of the oldest living musicians of stature. The Sammelan took Delhi by storm and went on to become an annual rage. Consistently featuring the reigning monarchs of the music world, this annual Sammelan changed the culture-scape of the capital of the country.
ITC Pioneers Corporate Patronage of Music
ITC then pioneered the corporate patronage of Hindustani classical music, an integral part of Indian classical music, which was suffering from the withdrawal of royal support. Corporate patronage of music on this scale was unknown before.
During the mid-seventies, ITC’s top management envisioned that the Company could play a major role to preserve and propagate the rich Indian musical heritage. Bearing in mind that there were several futile attempts to build gurukuls of music during the last 50 years, ITC aspired to go beyond merely nurturing and propagating the priceless tradition of Hindustani Classical Music. In creating ITCSRA, ITC’s farsighted endeavour was to establish a modern ‘Gurukul’ and revive the traditional ‘Guru-Shishya Parampara’.
ITCSRA was created in 1977 as an independent Public Charitable Trust. It was modelled as an institution to epitomise the best of Hindustani Classical Music. There was also a clear understanding that it would never seek any monetary help from the government and that it would be professionally run.
The combined wisdom of our Board of Trustees helps the Academy formulate its policies and take the best decisions for its progress. It ensures institutional effectiveness through professional management of the organisation. The present Board comprises Sanjiv Puri, Chairman of ITC Group; Nazeeb Arif, Amitav Mukherji, A.S. Sundaram and Saradindu Dutta who is the Executive Director of ITCSRA.