Source: The Hindu; Author: Neha Mujumdar; Photo Courtesy: Karan Ananth

Back in 1930, when renowned singer Shyamala Bhave’s father Govind Vithal Bhave set up the Saraswati Sangeet Vidyalaya, Nehru Circle in Seshadripuram wasn’t the traffic-jammed creature it is today. “There were no roads,” she recalled in an interview at her home, which doubles as the premises for the vidyalaya. “Not even the Railway Bridge opposite. The area was called the ‘American Colony’, because foreigners stayed there.”

Govind Vithal Bhave had studied Hindustani classical music under one of the giants of the field: Vishnu Digambar Paluskar (known today for introducing a widely used notational system for the largely oral body of knowledge that is Hindustani music).

The request:

After Govind Vithal Bhave had completed his musical education, Paluskar didn’t ask for a fee; instead, he requested his students to travel to different parts of the country and set up a school for Hindustani music that would popularise the art form.

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A Lifetime of Music: Classical vocalist Shyamala Bhave at the Saraswati Sangeet Vidyalaya, which was set up by her father in 1930 in Seshadripuram. Photo: Karan Ananth