Saturday, August 14, 2010

And now, a Hazarika museum set to come up at Kalakshetra

News Source : The Times of India , 12 Aug 2010
GUWAHATI: The maestro, his melody and now, a museum. The Srimanata Sankardev Kalakshetra (SSK) is all set to open a museum dedicated to the Dada Saheb Phalke award-winning singer, composer and filmmaker, Bhupen Hazarika. The octogenarian artiste may be ailing, but his young heart is keen to see this dream come true before his birthday on September 8. However, the completion of the project depends on how soon it receives the promised largesse from the Victoria Memorial authorities in Kolkata.

"This project is very close to our heart as Bhupen-da has contributed greatly in taking Assam's culture beyond the confines of its borders. He is very eager to see the museum inaugurated on September 8," said Chabin Rajkhowa, secretary, SSK.

Christened, Bhupen Hazarika Cultural Museum, it will be located on the premises of Kalakshetra. Victoria Memorial has agreed to provide financial (Rs 48 lakh) and technical support to SSK.

Rajkhowa explained, "They immediately agreed to pay the amount as a mark of respect to the great artist. They were supposed to sanction the funds in the last budget, but somehow, there has been a delay. We have sent a reminder. We are keen on setting up the museum as soon as possible and we have already collected a good number of objects and articles belonging to or associated with the legend as showpieces."

Nearly 3,600 display items, including songs, films, costumes, letters and awards of the maestro, are already in SSK's possession.

"We have even managed to get hold of Bhupen-da's songs on HMV's golden discs apart from mementoes collected by him from across the globe. Antique furniture associated with him and certificates have also been garnered," informed Rajkhowa.

The state already boasts of a small museum dedicated to artistes like Jyotiprasad Agarwala and Bishnu Rabha in Tezpur, but the Hazarika museum will be bigger.