It may well have been a tribute from one legend to another, but that was not to be — the documentary that film-maestro Satyajit Ray had planned to make on Pandit Ravi Shankar never saw the light of the day.
“The exhaustive ‘story board’ — the visual scenario were all ready,” said Sandip Ray, son of late Satyajit Ray, recollecting how Panditji would always send for his father during his visits to the city. “I particularly remember one incident when my father was in Varanasi shooting for ‘Joy Baba Felunath’. Ravi Shankar ji was also there and the moment he came to know that we were there, he called over the entire cast [which included Soumitra Chatterjee and Utpal Dutt]. I was very young then… but I remember, the entire day was spent reminiscing and chatting. He also discussed his plans for a Music Academy in the city,” Mr. Ray, also a film-director, told The Hindu .
Pandit Ravi Shankar had a special connection with Satyajit Ray and the association that began with ‘Pather Panchali’ (Song of the Road) continued through the two sequels, ‘Aparajito’ (Unconquered) and ‘Apur Sansar’ (The World of Apu), and another movie Paras Pathar (The Touchstone).
“My father was very happy with the musical scores that Panditji composed for these movies, especially Pather Panchali, and it is that haunting tune which came to my mind foremost when I heard this sad news,” Mr. Ray said.
Panditji too had lot of warmth for Satyajit Ray and composed the album ‘Farewell to a Friend’ when he passed away.