New Delhi, July 14 (ANI): President Pratibha Patil will confer the prestigious Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowships and Akademi Awards for 2008 at a special ceremony at Vigyan Bhavan today.The Akademi Fellowship (Akademi Ratna) and Akademi Awards (Akademi Puraskar) are recognized as the highest national honour conferred on practicing artists, gurus and scholars and have come to stay as the most coveted honour, which the artistes aspire to.
This year, the most coveted honour of Akademi Fellowship (Akademi Ratna) will be conferred on eminent personalities in the field of performing arts namely Sitara Devi, eminent Kathak exponent from Mumbai, Khaled Chowdhury, eminent stage designer from Kolkata, R.C. Mehta, eminent scholar of performing arts from Vadodara and Bhupen Hazarika, eminent personality in the field of performing arts and noted folk musician from Guwahati.
The Akademi Fellowship (Akademi Ratna Sadyasta) carries a purse of Rs 1, 00,000/-, besides a citation, an angavastram and a tamrapatra.
The Akademi Fellowship is restricted to 30 living persons at any given point of time.
The General Council of the Akademi also selected 34 practitioners of music, dance and theatre for 33 awards including one joint award for the Akademi Puraskar (Akademi Award) for the year 2008.
The Akademi Award carries a purse money of Rs 50,000/-, citation, angavastram and tamrpatra.
In the field of music, eight eminent artists namely Ulhas Kashalkar and M.R. Gautam for Hindustani Vocal Music; Ramesh Mishra (Sarangi) and Krishna Ram Chaudhary (Shehnai) for Hindustani Instrumental Music; Puranam Purushottama Sastri for Carnatic Vocal; B. Sasi Kumar (Violin) and Manrgudi A. Easwaran (Mridangam) for Carnatic Instrumental Music and Ningombam Ibobi Singh (Nata Sankirtana, Manipur) for Other Major Traditions of Music have been selected.
In the field of dance, nine eminent practioners namely Saroja Vaidyanathan, Bharatanatyam; Shashi Shankhla, Kathak; Kalamandalam Kuttan, Kathakali; Ramani Ranjan Jena, Odissi; M. Vasanthalakshmi and M.V. Narasimhachari (Joint Award), Kuchipudi; Kalamandalam Leelamma, Mohiniattam; Yogsunder Desai, Creative and Experimental Dance and Ramhari Das, Music for Dance (Odissi) have been selected.
In the field of theatre, eight eminent persons namely Markand Bhatt and Arundhati Nag for Acting, S. Ramanujam and Probir Guha for Direction, Mudra Rakshasa (Hindi) and Narsingh Dev.
Jamwal (Dogri) for Playwriting, Amba Sanyal for Allied Theatre Arts (Costume Designing) and Bansi Lal Khilari (Khayal, Rajasthan) for Major Traditions of Theatre have been selected.
For their contribution to other traditional/folk/ tribal music/ dance/ theatre, Shakuntala Nagarkar, Lavani (Maharastra); Birabar Sahoo, Gotipua (Orissa); Mangi Bai Arya, Mand (Rajasthan); L. Heramot Meitei, Thang-Ta (Martial Art, Manipur); Lakha Khan Mangniyar, Folk Music (Rajasthan); Hilda Mit Lepcha, Lepcha Music (Sikkim); Kartar Singh, Gurbani (Punjab) and Lakshman Das, Hari Katha (Karnataka) have been selected.
R. Satyanarayana of Kartanaka has been selected his Scholarship in Performing Arts. (ANI)