My moments with Nannagaru

By Ms. Suguna, Daughter of Sri Ghantasala

It's obvious that parents do have unending love towards their offspring. Even my parents are no exception to that fact. Nannagaru has a special recognition, status and respect in the society. He is used to be very jovial at home. He used to take us to beach and hotels in the evenings though he was a busy man.

Right from the childhood, all we knew was music. Our day starts in a different way. It starts with Nannagaru browsing through news papers followed by doing 'sangeeta sadhana'. Nannaguru's assistant 'Sangeeta Rao' used to stay in our out house. Myself and Shaymala sister used to learn 'Veena' from him. We are five siblings. Nannagaru wanted to teach Veena to Shyamala, Sitara to me, Piano to Vijaya Kumar, Violin to Ratna Kumar and Vocal to Shanti. He wanted to have an orchestra with six of us and give programs on the name of 'Ghantasala Gatra Kacheri'.

Lot of colleagues, singers and other musicians used to come to our house and all music sittings used to happen in the main hall of our house. After the recording is over Nannagaru used to tell about the happening to our mother. I remember him telling mother that after singing 'Ghanaghana sundara'. He expressed that he used different variations while singing the word 'Pandurangaa.....'

Though his we could not fulfill his wish of making a troop of six, I am happy because we had an opportunity to sing along with him for "Saibaba" audio recording done by HMV company. Nannagaru has penned the lyrics and composed music for 'Saibaba' audio. We can never forget giving chorus to him in that album. After the recording is over each of our five siblings are given Rs 100/- by the Manager of HMV. We gave all the money to our mother. And it was the first remuneration for us. I cannot forger seeing satisfaction in Nannagaru's eyes at that time.

At the time of Nannagaru's demise I was 14 years old. When we were thinking that Nannagaru is recovering from his ailment and he will be back home soon ... Sadasiva Rao uncle came to our school to take us to the hospital. By that time we reached the hospital, Nannagaru expired.

Prior to that day I remember Nannagaru promising me an ice cream at Woodlands followed by a visit to Malati Chandur aunt's home. Those were the last words spoken to me by Nannagaru. Though he is not there among us, the only satisfaction that consoles us is that love of people towards Nannagaru songs.