Speakers at a programme organised to pay tributes to senior Yakshagana artiste Malpe Ramdas Samaga, who passed away on Tuesday, said that the void created by his death would be difficult to fill.

Kalkura Foundation had organised the programme.

Yakshagana critic and artiste M. Prabhakara Joshi said that the death of scholars such as Samaga would have a direct impact on carrying forward the art form.

Samaga was among the scholars who kept fellow artistes always on their toes owing to his command over various subjects and languages, and his competency, Mr. Joshi said.

Mr. Joshi narrated anecdotes about Samaga.

President of Dakshina Kannada unit of Kannada Sahitya Parishat Pradeep Kumar Kalkura said that Samaga was a scholar par excellence. Samaga knew Tulu script and was a great orator and “haridasa”, he said.

Senior Yakshagana artiste Kolyur Ramachandra Rao said that Samaga discovered Yakshagana in 1950.

Parthi Subba memorial

President of Parthi Subba Yakshagana Academy, Kerala, Shankar Rai said that the academy was constructing a building in Kerala in memory of Parthi Subba, considered as the “father of Yakshagana”. It will have a library in memory of Sheni Gopalakrishna Bhat, another doyen of Yakshagana.

The academy would also make provision to display a portrait of Samaga there, he said.

Yakshagana songs were sung on the occasion with all “himmela” artistes.

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