British Mission Celebrates Satyajit Ray’s UK Connections in India

Nick Low, British Deputy High Commissioner in Kolkata, Rituparna Sengupta, Actress and Dr. Kunal Sarkar, cardiac surgeon, came together as panelists to shine the light on the myriad connections Satyajit Ray had with the UK. The talk show session was moderated by embassy staffer Sandip Chaudhuri, choosing to bring in his two other identities, that of a Ray fan and an amateur artist. He conceptualized the visual storytelling with a never seen before collection of canvas paintings that he drew for the occasion. Capturing twelve key touch points in Rays life right from his formative years all the way to his moments of international glory, he hopes for the series to become a collectors item. Representing the film industry, Rituparna Sengupta highlighted how Satyajit Rays creations including his fictional characters remain eternal in their appeal. Dr. Kunal Sarkar explored the British influence in the pivotal moments in his life and also hoped for Rays legacy getting carried forward in a conscientious way.

Nick Low said on reflection, “I was delighted to host “ARRAY – A British Retrospective”, a celebration of the life and achievements of Satyajit Ray. Satyajit Rays talents knew no limits. He was a prolific and immensely talented filmmaker, screenwriter, lyricist and composer. He was also an exemplar of the living bridge between India and the United Kingdom, a Fellow of the British Film Institute who rubbed shoulders with the likes of Sir Richard Attenborough. Satyajit died at seventy, taken too young. But his legacy lives on. And tonight friends from Britain and India celebrated it.

Satyajit Rays filmmaker identity largely overshadows the other facets of his creative persona. We had discovered a fantastic array of British building blocks in his life which we wanted to string up in a sequence – Satyajiter Bileter Ek Dozon Goppo (Twelve Stories of Satyajit’s UK connections). The knowledgeable audience seemed to like how we connected the dots. So that gives me a sense of fulfillment for our organizing efforts in what we thought would be a unique tribute to the maestro. finished off Sandip