West Bengal Music

Music forms an integral part of the art and culture of West Bengal. Representing the rich cultural tradition of the past, the state has two important schools of Classical Music that are known for their unique styles. The Classical Schools of Music or the different Gharanas reflect the enriched cultural and social life of West Bengal.

One of the most prominent school of Music, the Vishnupur Gharana of Music represents the Dhrupad style of singing. The Vishnupur School of Music has a rich past. The Vishnupur School of Music was established by Bahadur Shah who was a patron of the Dhrupad style of Music. The School derived its name from the district of Vishnupur in West Bengal, which has produced many musical artists. The prominent musicians of the Vishnupur School of Music were patronized by the feudal chiefs of the ancient times who were interested in the Hindustani Classical Music. The Vishnupur School continues to rule the world of classical music in the present era as well.

Rabindra Sangeet

Representing the vibrant and rich cultural life of West Bengal, the Rabindra Sangeet is a perfect blend of the Hindustani and European classical music. Also known as the Tagore School of Music, the Rabindra Sangeet is the heart and soul of the Bengali Classical music. One of the most prominent school of classical music of Bengal, Rabindra Sangeet is a popular way of relaxation and entertainment for the culturally enriched people of West Bengal.

Introduced by the Nobel laureate, Rabindranath Tagore, Rabindra Sangeet encompasses a variety of songs that casts a magical spell on the listeners. The unique composition of Rabindranath Tagore can be broadly classified into five distinct categories that comprise of the songs of love, nature, devotion, nation and songs in general.

Based on Dhrupad, Tappa and Baul style of singing, the beautiful compositions of Rabindra Sangeet caters to a large audience. Originally written and composed in the Bengali language, Rabindra Sangeet was later translated into Hindi and other vernacular languages as well.

Folk Songs

The Folk Songs of the rural Bengal represent the rich cultural and historical legacy of the ancient times. The melodious yet simple compositions of the various kinds of Folk Songs of the rural Bengal cast a magical spell on the audience. The Folk Songs of Bengal have acquired a global character because of their enchanting melody and simple philosophy of life. The splendid compositions of the Folk Songs have captured the imagination of the poet and have helped to spread happiness around the world.

The enriched Folk Songs of the rural Bengal can be distinctly categorized into four categories of Baul, Kirtan, Bhatiali and Sari songs. All the four different streams of folk music are famous for their unique styles and compositions. The Folk Songs reflect the inherent natural talent of the rural artists who composed the splendid music to refresh their mind and explore their hidden potentialities. Music is one of the best ways to refresh one's mind. The beautiful singing styles and the emotions attached with the two schools of Music in West Bengal overwhelms the listeners with their enchanting melodies and rhythms.

Musical Instruments

The indigenous Musical Instruments of West Bengal reflects the rich musical tradition and heritage of the state. The wide variety of Musical Instrument represents the musical fervor of the people of the state of West Bengal.

West Bengal has always been the nerve center of cultural civilizations and developments. Since time immemorial the varied folk culture and tradition of the state has been the major focus of attention for visitors. The folk songs are an integral part of the indigenous rural culture of the Bengali community. Accompanied by proper Musical Instruments the beautiful folk songs fills the otherwise dull and boring life of the rural people of Bengal with joy and mirth.

Vishnupur School of Music

The Vishupur School of music reflects the rich cultural life of Bengal. One of the most prominent school of music, the Vishnupur Gharana represents the Dhrupad style of singing. The Dhrupad style of music was made popular by the musical maestro Mian Tansen, one of the nine gems in the court of Emperor Akbar.

The Vishnupur School of music derived its name from the place of Vishnupur in the Bankura district of West Bengal. The Vishnupur School of music boasts of a rich cultural and historical legacy. A favorite with the great Mughal rulers of Delhi, the Dhrupad style of music that ultimately led to the foundation of the Vishnupur School was made famous in Bengal by Bahadur Shah. A passionate patron of the Dhrupad musical style, Bahadur Shah introduced a new line of musical thought in the arena of Hindustani Classical Music in 1370 AD.

The Vishnupur School of Music has composed various devotional songs in a pure Dhrupad style. Some of the prominent patrons of this famous school of music belonged to the Brahmo Samaj who were so moved by the unique singing pattern of the Vishnupur School of music that they nurtured the music for their self enrichment and entertainment.

Last Updated on 21 March 2013