Biography of Guru Bandana Sen

Guru Bandana Sen, the legendary Kathak maestro, has unique contribution to the world of dance. She has been placed amongst the finest dancers that India has ever produced. Born of a very educated family, she was mostly inspired by her late father, Sri P.C. Sen, a Barrister of Calcutta High Court. She had her early training in Jaipur Gharana style of Kathak from famous dancer Smt. Jaikumari Devi and later she learnt from the ‘Nritya Samrat’ Sri Sambhu Maharaj-ji. In her career spanning more than 50 years, Guru Bandana Sen has performed in about 5000 programmes in India and abroad. She represented India as the Cultural Ambassador to USSR and Germany. She also graced the USA with her scintillating performance on several occasions.

Titled “Kathak Queen”, “Bhav Samraggi”, “Nrityasri”, “Nritya Shiromoni”, “Sarangadev”, “Banga Kanna”, she is also the recipient of gold medal from the first President of India, Dr Rajendra Prasad and gold medal from Nawab Sir Reza Ali Khan Bahadur. Her fame crossed the national barrier and the king of Nepal duly recognized her talent by presenting to her the gold “Kukri”. She has also been crowned with the title of “GURU” from the West Bengal Government. It is said that whenever Kathak Queen Bandana Sen starts her dance, it appears that a thousand lotus blossoms on the stage. Her dance is exquisite, illuminating and forceful. Her style is full of elegance, chaste and captivating. From appearance on the stage, she makes an immediate rapport with the audience for her towering personality. Her interpretation is so impressive that even a layman can appreciate it. Her exposition of “bhava” (expression) is so graceful and poetic that she is called the “Queen of expression”. It is an additional attraction to hear her distinct “bols” on different “talas”, “Urdu Shairees” (Poems) and sweet songs.

Her choreography includes History of Kathak through Ages, Raagmala, Ritumala, Rhythm of India, Devotees through the ages, Shakuntala, Meerabai, Siddhartha, Kathak Angik, Shaam-e-Gazal, Bhor Bhai Rajani, Nrityanjali, Barkha and numerous other shows. Guru Bandana Sen has a penchant for going the non-conventional way. She had composed a dance drama, Jeeban Theke Mahajeebaner Pathe, on the life of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose to commemorate his birth centenary. Presently, she is the advisory committee member and Judge of television Doordarshan India, All India Post and Telegraph Asociation, Paschim Banga Rajya Sangeet Academy, Youth Festival, Jahar Sishu Bhavan, All India Fine Arts Association, member of prestigious Board of Studies at Rabindra Bharati Univeristy-Kolkata, examiner of post-graduate and doctorate and faculty selection at Rabindra Bharati Univeristy-Kolkata, judge on behalf of Central Government for National Talent Search Contest.