Pandit Shankar Ghosh, Tabla Maestro, Dies At 80

23/01/2016 4:04 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST
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KOLKATA -- Eminent tabla player Pandit Shankar Ghosh passed away on Friday night at a private city hospital, his family said. He was 80.

Ghosh leaves behind his wife Hindustani classical vocalist of Patiala gharana Sanjukta Ghosh, his famed percussionist son Pt Bickram Ghosh, daughter-in-law Jaya Seal Ghosh and two grandsons.

Ghosh, who had been admitted to the hospital following heart ailment, was in coma since past 40 days and died at 9 PM yesterday, Jaya Seal Ghosh told PTI.

The legendary classical exponent, who is the mentor of Bickram Ghosh, had been admitted in the ICU of a super- speciality hospital on E M Bypass, since mid December and underwent angioplasty on 14 December.

"He was in an unconscious state for about one-and-half months and left for his heavenly abode at 9 PM. The condition further worsened since last Wednesday. We will keep the body at a mortuary and are planning to take it to our ancestral residence and then to Rabindra Sadan complex tomorrow morning," Jaya, an acclaimed dancer and actor, said.

After being initially admitted with cardiac problems, Ghosh had developed symptoms of pneumonia and geriatric complications and had multi-organ failure in the last few hours, the bereaved family said.

"He had been suffering from pneumonia with a background of ischaemic heart disease. Old age, diabetes and hypertension had added to the problems," a statement released by the hospital said.

"Lost him, The Emperor of Tabla. My beloved father," Bickram posted on Facebook tonight.

Lost him...The Emperor of TablaMy beloved father

Posted by Bickram Ghosh on Friday, January 22, 2016

The 80-year-old, amongst the most well-known tabla players in the country, was awarded the prestigious Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in the year 2000.

Ghosh trained mainly with legendary Pandit Gyan Prakash Ghosh. Ustad Feroz Khan, Pandit Anath Nath Bose and Pandit Sudarshan Adhikari were his other teachers and he followed the Farukhabad gharana of Hindustani classical music.

He had taught tabla to a large number of students not only in Kolkata but also in Europe. He also received the ITC Sangeet Research Academy award and the Ustad Hafiz Ali Khan award.

At various points, Ghosh performed with vocalists such as Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khan, Pandit Omkarnath Thakur, Pandit Vinayakrao Patwardhan, Girija Devi and Akhtari Bai.

Away from India, he collaborated with artists like Greg Ellis, Pete Lockett and John Bergamo.

He had also done 'jugalbandi' with celebrated classical musicians like sitarists Pandit Ravi Shankar and Ustad Vilayat Khan and violinist Pandit VG Jog and earned rave reviews.

A pall of gloom descended over the city's music fraternity as news of his death spread and many prominent personalities from the art and culture world rushed to the hospital.

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