Photo of Prattyush Banerjee - Sarode - Photo by Eckart Stein

Prattyush Banerjee
Sarode

Born in 1969 in a family of music lovers and promoters in Kolkata, Prattyush Banerjee received his first lessons at the age of 8 from his father, Prasun Kumar Banerjee. Two years later, Samarendra Sikdar undertook his further education until in 1981 Pandit Buddhadev Das Gupta accepted him and has been instructing him to the present day.

In accordance with his school, the Shahjahanpur Bengal Gharana, Prattyush Banerjee plays a sarode with five melody strings, of which he makes full use. For an increased certitude of performance in the higher pitches he had the transition between the main resonator and the neck built more narrowly, and the resonator extends less far into the neck of the instrument. The strings almost touch the end of the neck, which allows for meends (gliding tunes) starting from the open strings.

In addition to the sarode, Prattyush Banerjee studied vocal music and tabla and took piano lessons. He is the first instrumentalist who plays tappas (a very skill-oriented form of semi-classical Indian music) on the sarode and is very versed in classical Western music.

 

Dr. Wolf Kalipp, Instructor at the Academy of Music and Theatre in Hannover,
for dipavali in May 2006:

Prattyush Banerjee is an aristocratic-looking sarode virtuoso, who has a particularly aesthetical sensitiveness for the musical elaboration of the different segments of a Raga. That is especially reflected in his inimitable composition of the alaps, in which he contrives to savour the respective melodic and mood-charged meaning in an exceedingly lyrical way and thereby manages to shift the listener beyond space and time (the best evidence for perfect mastery of a Raga on the part of the interpreter!). That reminds of the legendary abilities of the famous sitar maestro and namesake Nikhil Banerjee (1931-1986) and reveals a most beautiful poetic Bengali tradition, which was so strongly shaped by the Persian linguistic aesthetics over centuries.
The elegance of the compository-improvisatory diversification of thousandfold play-technical facets and canonized parameters of classical Northern Indian Ragas is mastered by Prattyush Banerjee in the same naturalness as the rich palette of dynamic differentiation, which cannot be found that easily among Indian interpreters. And in a skilful undercurrent of his interpretation art on the sarode the listener experiences the great tradition of the ancient Indian Dhrupad in the same way as the rejuvenating influences of the Arab-Persian Maqam- and Dastgah compositions.

 

Press Review - Prattyush Banerjee (Sarode):

Upon invitation of the Hamburg Raga Society the Indian Sarod virtuoso Prattyush Banerjee will come today (at 8 p.m.) for a concert at the Academy of Music and Theatre (Harvestehuder Weg 12). ... - Hamburger Abendblatt, May 9th, 2006

With how much sensitivity the Sarod can be played is proven at this time by the exceptional musician Prattyush Banerjee on his first tour of Germany, which will also lead him to Kassel today. After more than 25 years of intensive training by Sarod maestro Buddhadev Das Gupta, Prattyush Banerjee is nowadays a consistent guest at the major music festivals of his country. - Hessische Allgemeine (HNA), May 11th, 2006

 

Publications - Prattyush Banerjee (Sarode):