Real story of flute maestro now captured in reel

Not many know that flute maestro Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasia was born in a family that had very little to do with music. His father was a wrestler and had every hope that his son would follow in his footsteps. But so great was his desire to learn music that Chaurasia would practise kushti under his father's guidance and then hide himself for his music riyaaz.

Such memories and incidents are essential details that make Chaurasia the man and the musician he is. While he is among the most famed musicians in the country and abroad, very little of his private life is known to the world. However, his son, Rajeev Chaurasia now hopes to reveal the lesser-known side of the maestro with his directorial debut, Bansuri Guru.

In the city on Sunday to attend the premiere of the film at the Pune International Film Festival 2013, Rajeev explained why he had dived into film direction for this project. "When we decided to make a film about my father, I met many big directors who wanted to make the film. But I realised it would not be easy as they will not be able to see my father with my perspective. I became convinced that if I tried, I could do my father and the audience justice because of how well I know him," said Rajeev.

The 34-year-old has several years of experience in television projects, working on business development and programme direction with channels such as Sony and MTV, but this is the first time that he directing a film. A Padma Vibhushan recipient, Chaurasia was awarded by the PIFF on Thursday for his contribution to Indian film music and, hence, it is fitting that the premiere of a film on his life and work will be part of the festival.

"The movie will show seven decades of his life. It will give a glimpse into his personality, his moods, his memories. It is a very personal film and not only does it show Panditji, it also shows his students, his friends and well-wishers," said Rajeev. The hour-long film will depict Chaurasia in everyday life, with shots taken in Mumbai, Bhubaneswar and Rotterdam his three preferred dwelling places. Stories from his childhood would be told in a documentary format, said Rajeev. The movie will also feature music by Chaurasia himself.

While Rajeev's relationship with his father gave him an edge while making the film, the one year taken to make the film was also very special for him. "My father means the world to me and he is my idol. But it has never been a normal father-son relationship. He is a public figure and everyone thinks he belongs to them. Unfortunately, we have never had the kind of relationship where we go on long walks or such things. This movie, in fact, has added so much to my relationship with my father. We are closer and we understand each other so much more now," said Rajeev.

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