NOTED danseuse, choreographer Amala Shankar dies at 101

ছবি: ঘুমের মধ্যেই চলে গেলেন! দেখুন প্রয়াত নৃত্যশিল্পী অমলা শঙ্করের পুরনো কিছু ছবি

Amala Shankar, who had become a renowned dancer after breaking taboos and inspired several women to opt for learning dance and performing on public stage like her, passed away in Kolkata at the age of 101. Her family said she died of cardiac arrest in her sleep after suffering from age-old related ailments. West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said her death has caused an irreparable void in the world of dance. She was the spouse of  Uday Shankar, the legendary dancer and choreographer, who was instrumental in popularising Indian fusion dance across the world. Her brother-in-law was Pandit Ravi Shankar, younger sibling of Uday Shankar, who breathed his last in 1977. He was then 58. She was mother of noted musician Ananda Shankar and actress Mamata Shankar. Amala Shankar learned dancing in the 1930s. In a condolence message, Mamata Banerjee said Amala Shankar’s death is an “irreparable” loss in the world of dance. Born as Amala Nandy, in 1919 at Jessore, now in Bangladesh in a merchant family, she was keen on arts and music from an early age and she received abundant encouragement from her parents. It was a chance encounter in France in 1930 when she first met Uday Shankar. She was then 11. She had accompanied her father, Akshay Nandy, to the International Colonial Exhibition in Paris. Uday Shankar was in France with his troupe for some engagements. She joined  Uday Shankar led troupe and performed with him around the world. Amala Shankar’s granddaughter and actor Sreenanda has  Shankar tweeted, “Today my Thamma left us at the age of 101. We just celebrated her birthday last month. Feeling so restless that there is no flight from Mumbai to Kolkata. Heartbroken. May her soul Rest in peace. This is the end of an era. Love you Thamma. Thank you for everything”. (Photo courtesy: ABP)

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