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Maniram Dutta Muktiyar


Maniram Dutta Muktiyar

Celebrated exponent and teacher of Sattriya music, dance and theatre , Maniram Dutta Muktiyar, was brought to join the monastic order in the Kamalabari Sattra at Majuli, the river-island of the Brahmaputra in Assam, at the age of five years. Haring had non formal education in the traditional sattra environment , Maniram was initiated to the training of Sattriya music, dance and theatre and other associated disciplines of the monastic order in the sattra. He soon shone to prominence and distinction by virtue of his artistic skill, dexterity and virtuosity, particularly in dance and playing of khol (drum). With his numerous performances inside and outside the sattra, he brought colour, artistry and glory to the Sattriya dance and music. Being elevated to the coveted position of the Barbayan (pricipal teacher) of the Kamalabari Sattra,

Maniram Dutta headed the institutional training of Sattriya music and dance of the Sattra with the blessings and patronage of His Holiness Chandrahas Deva Goswami, the Sattradhikara of the Kamalabari Sattra, connoisseur and scholar. Among his disciples who later rose to prominence with contributions to the tradition, include, Late Rasewar Saikia Barbaya (SNAA wardee) , Shri Ghanakanta Bora Barbayan (SNA Awardee) Shar Rameswar Barbayan of the Kamalabari Sattra. He was also elevated as Muktiar and entrusted the responsibility of managing the diplomatic affairs of the sattra institution.

The artistry of his performance of dance and playing of khol (drum) at the age 79 at the National Seminar of Dance in New Delhi in 1958, wonderstruck scholars, critics and exponents of various classical dance traditions and thus unfolded the greatness of the heritage of Sattriya Dance before the wider world of art lovers outside Assam. Associating himself with the Bargit Research Committee of Asam Sangeet Natak Akademi in its research projects on Rhythm in the Vaisnava Music and Sattriya Dances of Assam, at the initiative and invitation of Dr. Maheswar Neog, doyan of scholars of Sankaradeva studies in the sixties of the last century . Maniram Dutta Muktiar showed his penchant for musicological analysis and academic pursuit and documentation of this traditional performing art.
Maniram Dutta Muktiar was honoured with the first-ever Sangeet Natak Akademi.

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