S N Ratanjankar

Shrikrishna Narayan Ratanjankar (Jan 1, 1900 – Feb 14, 1974) was a distinguished scholar and teacher of Hindustani classical music, from the Agra gharana. Foremost disciple of Vishnu Narayan Bhatkhande and Faiyaz Khan of Baroda State, he also remained principal of Bhatkhande Music Institute (Bhatkande Sangeet Sansthan), Lucknow, for many years, where he trained many noted names in the field of music.

Early life

His father Narayan Govind Ratanjankar was born in Mumbai. Shrikrishna's grand father, Govindrao came to Mumbai in the middle of 19th century. After graduation Shrikrishna's father, Narayanrao became a police officer in the then British regime. At the age of 7, S.N.Ratanjankar was trained under the guidance of Krishnam Bhatt of Karwar. He also received instruction from Anant Manohar Joshi (Gwalior gharana) and later under Faiyaz Khan of Agra gharana. In 1911, he started training with musicologist Vishnu Narayan Bhatkhande and is today his most well known disciple. He graduated from Bombay University in 1926.

Career

In the year 1925, Ratanjankar graduated (BA) from the Wilson College, Mumbai. He was the Principal of Bhatkhande Music University (earlier known as Marris Music College), at Lucknow for several years, later was appointed as Vice-Chancellor Indira Sangeet Kala Vishva Vidyalaya, Khairagarh, Madhya Pradesh. Later he was once again called to head the Bhatkhande Sangeet Vidyapeeth on a 2 years contract. His students include K. G. Ginde, SCR Bhatt, Chidanand Nagarkar, V.G. Jog, Dinkar Kaikini, Shanno Khurana, Sumati Mutatkar, Acharya Prabhakar Chinchore, C R Vyas, Chinmoy Lahiri, and Roshan Lal Nagrath (music director).

As a vocalist he sang Dhrupad and Khayal styles of Agra gharana. A known vaggeyakara like his mentor Bhatkande, Ratanjankar has more than 800 compositions under his pen name "Sujan", notated and documented diligently by his disciple K. G. Ginde. He also published books including Geet Manjari, Taan Sangrah, Sangeet Shiksha, and Abhinava Geet Majari.In addition to these books he has also composed three operas.

He also composed some new ragas such as Marga Bihag, Gopika Basant, Kedar Bahar, Sawani Kedar, Ranjani Kalyan, Hansaranjani, and Salagvarali.

He was appointed Chairman of the Jury of Auditions of AIR (All India Radio) in the mid-1950s, during which time he was involved in a re-auditioning controversy, which involved re-auditioning of Indian musicians performing on AIR, who considered it an insult and opposed it and thus greatly diminished his reputation among Indian classical musicians.

In 1957 he was awarded the Padma Bhushan by the Government of India, and in 1963 the Sangeet Natak Akademi, India's National Academy for Music, Dance and Drama, awarded him its highest honour for lifetime achievement, the Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowship.

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