Bhupen Hazarika Age, Death, Wife, Children, Family, Biography & More
Bio/Wiki Full NameDr. Bhupen Hazarika NicknameSudhakantha Profession(s)Musician, Singer, Lyricist, Poet, Filmmaker Physical Stats & More Eye ColourLight Brown Hair ColourBlack Politics Political PartyBharatiya Janata Party
Some Lesser Known Facts About Bhupen Hazarika
Did Bhupen Hazarika smoke?: Not Known
Did Bhupen Hazarika drink alcohol?: Yes
Bhupen Hazarika while Drinking
Bhupen Hazarika was the eldest child to his parents among 10 children.
In 1929, his father, Nilakanta Hazarika, shifted to the Bharalumukh region of Guwahati along with the family. Then, he further shifted to Dhubri in 1932, and to Tezpur in 1935, for better prospects.
He was interested in music since his childhood, so his mother exposed him to traditional Assamese Music and lullabies at an early age.
He was first discovered by Bishnu Prasad Rabha (an Assamese artist) and Jyotiprasad Agarwala (an Assamese lyricist) at the age of 10, in a public event, when he sang a Borgeet (traditional Assamese devotional songs).
In 1936, both Bishnu Prasad Rabha and Jyotiprasad Agarwala took him to Kolkata, where he recorded the first song of his life for the Selona Company at the Aurora Studio.
He wrote the first song of his life, “Agnijugor Firingoti Moi,” when he was in his thirteenth year.
After completing his MA, he started working at All India Radio, Guwahati. After a brief period, he won a scholarship from Columbia University for his PhD, and he moved to New York in 1949.
Bhupen Hazarika in Columbia University
In New York, he became a good friend to Paul Robeson (a singer), who influenced him more in music and his song, Bistirno Parore. Bhupen then, translated this song by himself in several Indian languages like Hindi and Bengali.
Bhupen Hazarika and Paul Robeson
At Columbia University, he met Priyamvada Patel, who became his wife in 1950. The couple blessed with a child, Tez Hazarika, in 1952, and came back to India in 1953.
After returning to India from the USA, he started working as a teacher at the Gauhati University.
In 1953, he started a close association with the leftist IPTA (Indian People’s Theatre Association). In 1955, he was appointed as the Secretary of the Reception Committee of the Third All Assam Conference of IPTA, held in Guwahati.
Bhupen Hazarika at an IPTA Event
A few years later, after working as a teacher in Gauhati University, he left his job and moved to Kolkata, where he started a new journey of his life and established as a successful singer, filmmaker, and music director. He directed and composed music for several films including Shakuntala and Pratidhwani.
Bhupen Hazarika in Recording Studio
He is acknowledged to set a new trend in Bengali music. The Jivanmukhi Geet, the popular genre of West Bengal, started in the 1990s by Kabir Suman is known to be influenced by Bhupen Hazarika.
In 1993, he was appointed as the President of the Asam Sahitya Sabha. The same year, he was facilitated with the Best Music Award for the film, ‘Rudaali’ at the Asia Pacific International Film Festival in Japan and became the first Indian to achieve this honour.
From December 1998 – December 2003, he held the Chairman position of the Sangeet Natak Akademi.
In 2011, he recorded the songs for the film, “Gandhi to Hitler;” which became his last film.
He died on 5 November 2011 at the Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital in Mumbai. The body of the singer was cremated in a plot near the Brahmaputra River; which was donated by Gauhati University.
Bhupen Hazarika’s Last Journey
He had lent his voice for several films including Rudaali (1993), Mil Gayee Manzil Mujhe (1989), Saaz (1997), Gajagamini (1998), Daman (2000), Kyon (2003), etc.
He had also composed music for several Bangladeshi films.
He had received the President’s National Award thrice for the movies, “Pratidhwani,” “Sakuntala,” and “Loti Ghoti,” and the National Award for Best Music Director for his film, “Chameli Memsaab.”
Throughout his long career, he had written numerous songs and almost 15 books including ‘Demystifying Dr. Bhupen Hazarika: Envisioning Education for India’ and ‘Winged Horse: 76 Assamese Songs.’
Bhupen Hazarika’s Books
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