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Published on Nov 2, 2010
Pt. Ravi Shankar recalls his starting days in 1930 (when he was 10 yrs old) of playing in the troupe of his elder brother Pt. Uday Shankar.
Pt. Uday Shankar was the pioneer of the modern Indian dance and he was the first person to take Indian music and dance to Europe and U.S.A.
This is a small clip of Pt. Ravi Shankar and his family watching the video of a rare footage of Pt. Uday Shankar and Simkie (Simone Barbier) performing along with other musicians featuring Timirbaran as the music director. Mademoiselle Alice Boner use to produce and arrange these shows in Paris. There were also musicians like Vishnudas Shirali and the great Ud. Alauddin Khan (who joined later for one year in 1935). From Uday Shankar's first show in Calcutta, then establishing the headquarters in Paris this troupe reached Hollywood through Solomon Hurok as Uday Shankar troupe of Hindu dancers and Musicians in 1932 which they (Westerners) used to call Tagore's dance (at that time only Rabindranath Tagore was known from India ..... in the West).
Pt Uday Shankar started his career with Anna Pavlova and later he established an Art and Cultural centre in Almora involving other dance and music legends like Shankaran Namboodiri, Kandappan Pillai, Amoni Singh and Alauddin Khan.
Uday Shankar later made (directed) the first experimental film of India, Kalpana in 1943 which delayed due to 2nd World War and released in 1948.
Few famous dance/performing art creations by Pt Uday Shankar -- Indra, Gandharva, Snake Charmer, Gajasur Badha, Raslila, Prakriti o Ananda etc.
Bibliography: Smriti -- Ravi Shankar memories
A short clip of Panditji narrating the past memories(of 1932) while his daughters Anoushka Shankar and Norah Jones (Geethali Norah Jones Shankar) are listening among others. A short research by me on those "bizarres instruments" from Uday Shankar troupe: Sarod by Timirbaran, Pakhwaj by Kedarshankar, Sitar, tabla & Jaltaranga by Bishnudas Shirali, Esraj by Rajen and Sursagar by Brajbihari also not to forget Kid Ravi Shankar on Sitar :-)