Santoor Maestro Pandit Shivkumar Sharma Passes Away
- Pandit Shivkumar Sharma passed away due to cardiac arrest.
- Sharma gave santoor once a little known instrument a classical status.
- Pandit received the prestigious Padma Shri in 1991.
Mumbai: Legendary musician and santoor player Pandit Shivkumar Sharma passed away on May 10th. He was 84. He had been suffering from kidney-related issues for the last six months and was on dialysis. He passed away due to cardiac arrest. Born in Jammu, Pandit Shivkumar Sharma began learning santoor at the age of thirteen. His first public performance was in Mumbai in 1955. It is, in fact, Pandit Shivkumar Sharma who has been credited with popularising the santoor.
Sharma gave santoor, once a little known instrument from Jammu and Kashmir, a classical status and exalted it along with other, more traditional and famous instruments such as the sitar and sarod. Also, Pandit Shivkumar Sharma composed the background music for one of the scenes in the 1956 film Jhanak Jhanak Payal Baje. Four years later, Pandit Shivkumar Sharma recorded his first solo album.
Pandit Shivkumar Sharma collaborated with flautist Hariprasad Chaurasia and guitarist Brij Bhushan Kabra in 1967, and together, they produced the acclaimed concept album Call of the Valley. With Hariprasad Chaurasia, in fact, Pandit Shivkumar Sharma composed music for several Hindi films including Silsila, Chandni as well as Darr. Pandit Shivkumar Sharma received the prestigious Padma Shri in 1991, and the Padma Vibhushan in 2001.