In a ceremonial soiree hosted by Shriram Bharatiya Kala Kendra, this year’s ‘Sumitra Charat Ram Award’ for Lifetime Achievement was presented to Kathak exponent Dr. Uma Sharma (Padma Bhushan) by the Chief Guest Dr. Karan Singh on Thursday, November 17th, 2022 at Kamani Auditorium, Copernicus Marg, New Delhi in the presence of Guest of Honour, Ustad Amjad Ali Khan (Padma Vibhushan).
‘Sumitra Charat Ram Award’ for Lifetime Achievement was instituted by SBKK in 2010 to commemorate the huge contribution made by Smt Sumitra Charat Ram (1914 – 2011) as a harbinger of Cultural Revival in post-independent India. The night of August 14th, 1947 as the country waited to wake up to a Sun that rose in Free India, Sumitraji held an All Night Music Soirée with the stalwarts of Indian Music & Dance to commemorate the momentous occasion.
In an event embellished with the presence of legends and enriched with high cultural distinction, Smt. Shobha Deepak Singh – the flag bearer of Shriram Bharatiya Kala Kendra, welcomed connoisseurs of Arts. As she marches forward holding her mother’s legacy on her strong shoulders, she said, “Dr. Uma Sharma is a renowned classical dancer who has been awarded Padma Bhushan for her unique contribution to the cultural tradition of this country. She has revolutionized the repertoire of the classical form of “Kathak” by enriching it with literary and intellectual substance by drawing upon and interpreting the works of great poets of our country from ancient to modern time. In spearheading the transformation of this art form, Uma Sharma has been at the centre stage of events in the country. Her themes have etched out the color of concern about issues that matter. We hold a lot of pride and are honored to present this prestigious award to Dr. Uma Sharma.”
Overwhelmed by receiving the award Dr. Uma Sharma said, “I am honored to have been recognized for my efforts in the field of Kathak, which is my first love. It is my passion for this form of dance that has allowed me to take it through generations and help it evolve. Receiving Sumitra Charat Ram Award for Lifetime Achievement today reinforces my belief in myself and in a bright future for Kathak in India.” She expressed the state of her heart in a beautiful performance at the end of the event.
For the last 11 years ‘Sumitra Charat Ram Award’ for Lifetime Achievement has been presented to honour eminent Artists who have made a lasting contribution to the field of Indian Classical Music & Dance. The first award was presented to Pt. Birju Maharaj, the doyen of kathak Dance followed by Smt. Kishori Amonkar (Hindustani Vocal Music), Shri Mayadhar Raut (Odissi Dance), Smt. Kumudini Lakhia (Kathak Dance), Pt. Jasraj (Hindustani Vocal Music), Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasia (Hindustani Instrumental Music, Flute), Smt. Girija Devi (Hindustani Classical Music, Vocal), Ustad Amjad Ali Khan (Hindustani Classical Music, Sarod) and lastly to Dr. Sonal Mansingh (Indian Classical Dance Guru, Motivational Speaker).