Dr Prabha Atre, three times Padma awardee, renowned classical singer dies at 92

Dr Prabha Atre. Dr Prabha Atre is credited for her role in popularizing Hindustani classical vocal music globally. (Photo courtesy: wikipedia.org)

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Pune/IBNS: Renowned classical singer, Dr. Prabha Atre, passed away at the age of 92 in Pune on January 13, following a cardiac arrest at her residence.

Representing the Kirana Gharana of Hindustani classical music, Atre had received recognition through all three Padma awards bestowed by the Indian government.

According to a report in the media, Atre suffered a cardiac arrest while sleeping at her home and was rushed to a private hospital in the Kothrud area of Pune city. Unfortunately, she was declared dead at 5:30 am

Her funeral will held once her relatives arrive from abroad, according to the report.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi condoled the maestro’s death, remembering her as “a luminary of Indian classical music” and noting that her “life was a symphony of excellence and dedication.”

Dr. Prabha Atre Ji was a luminary of Indian classical music, whose work was admired not just in India but across the globe. Her life was a symphony of excellence and dedication. Her efforts have greatly enriched our cultural fabric. Pained by her demise. Condolences to her family… pic.twitter.com/9rLNa8opOm— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) January 13, 2024

Born on September 13, 1932, Dr. Prabha Atre was not only a distinguished classical vocalist but also a versatile individual, serving as an academician, researcher, composer, and author. With a background in science and law, she held a doctorate in music.

Dr. Prabha Atre is recognized for her monumental role in popularizing Hindustani classical vocal music globally.

She was proficient in various styles including Khayal, Thumri, Dadra, Ghazal, geet, Natyasangeet, and bhajans.

Over the past five decades, she had been imparting private lessons to students.

In pursuit of her commitment to education, Atre founded the Swarmayee Gurukul, aiming to teach students worldwide in both the ‘guru-shishya parampara’ (traditional mentor-disciple system) and institutional approaches.

She strongly advocated for bridging the gap between these two systems.

Honoured with the Padma Vibhushan in January 2022, the nation’s second-highest civilian award, Atre had previously received the Padma Shri in 1990 and the Padma Bhushan in 2002. She was also a recipient of the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in 1991.

This week marked the tragic loss for the world of Hindustani classical music, as both Dr. Prabha Atre and Ustad Rashid Khan, who battled prostate cancer for four years, passed away. Ustad Rashid Khan died in Kolkata on Tuesday.