Foot Prints of the Masters

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K.V. Ramankutty Kerala Bhasha Institute Price : Rs. 45/V.C. Jose

Sathyajit Rayyude Pather Panchali

The art in audio recording is the artistically sensitive application of the recording process.
featuring orchestras, musical theatre, or dance. Although most of these entertainers play for live audiences, many perform exclusively for recording or production studios. Regardless of the setting, musicians, singers, and related workers spend considerable time practicing, alone and with their band, orchestra, or other musical ensemble. Many who are good and have found a position for themselves work as freelancers. Of those who earn a wage or salary, some are employed by organizations and some by performing arts companies, such as professional orchestras, small chamber music groups, musical theatre companies, and drama troupes. Musicians and singers also perform in television programmes, nightclubs and restaurants and for weddings and other events. Wellknown musicians and groups may perform in concerts, appear on radio and television broadcasts, and make recordings and music videos. The Armed Forces also offer careers in their bands and smaller musical groups for those who are trained.

he legendry Indian Film-maker Satyajit Ray’s debut accomplishment ‘Pather Panchali’ (Song of the Little Road) completes half a century this year. As a sign of respect to this landmaker film, film societies of the country, national and international film festivals, and film lovers throughout the world with great fanfare celebrates its birth conducting special screening, seminars, discussions, and so on. In this occasion, K.V. Ramankutty’s attempt to bring out the second edition of this already popular book, “Sathyajit Ray’s Patherpanchali’, adds fresh momentum to the ongoing deliberations. In fact, the novel Pather Panchali by Bibuthi Bhushan Banerjee which Ray mentally committed himself to filming became a classic in Bengal literature. The novel contains a Plethora of characters. The main characters growing boy Apu, his elder sister Durga, their mother Sarbajaya and father Harehar Ray, who is a priest, and his elderly distant relative Inder Thakrun. As the first of Apu trilogy, the adaption of Pather Panchali involved drastic compression, elusion and omission of scenes in the novel, as well as occasional additions. Out of a seemingly random sequence of significant and trivial episodes, Ray had to extract a simple theme, while preserving the loitering impression created by the original. The script had to contain some of the rambling quality of the novel, commented Ray, “because that in itself contained a clue to the fact of authenticity: life in a poor Bengali village does ramble. It must be said that much of the power of the film lies in this calculated enriching


of an elemental situation by contrast: as Durga delights her old auntie with a stolen fruit, Sarbajaya ticks her off for taking it: as Inder Thakrun goes off to die in the forest: Apu and Durga babble with life: and as Harihar returns to the village, terribly overdue but happy because he is bearing gifts for his wife and children. Sarbajaya can think only of the child who has left them forever during his absence. The fact that in spite of his sound intellectual background, Ray had to encounter a lot of sufferings in making the film a reality, itself inculcates the pathetic scenario of the then Indian cinema. Until Pather Panchali, Indian cinema in general and Bengali cinema in particular, was huddled in melodramatic, sedative and husky entertainers. Ray’s stubborn stand has virtually sledged the country’s film ethos to delightful audience. And Pather Panchali magnetised international audience to Indian new wave cinema. Though there may be many studies on the life of Ray and his film in India and abroad, there may not be so much in Malayalam, especially the first film of the director. The important of V.K. Ramankutty’s book lies in the fact that with limited pages, a panorama of the great director’s life and films are sufficiently deciphered in the book. A distinctive characteristic of the book is that two sequences of the Pather Panchali: one that of the theft of necklace by Durga and another Apu and Durga’s anxiety for seeing a train are cut to size shot by shot for making the reader feel the importance of technology in film making. This approach, indeed, would benefit a lot for students of media and communication researchers. Over the years, Pather Panchali has become a world classic. Writing a single book on this classic is surely a bold attempt. Writing style, material selection, and chronicles of events are impeccable. All these together make the book readable and enjoyable.


Nov- Dec 2005


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