Sounak is a foremost vocalist of the present generation and has made a place for himself in the hearts of many Classical and Bengali Art music lovers. His regular stage performances for prestigious concert stages, in India and abroad, his regular television appearances and his audio albums that have topped charts bear witness to that.
Having an exceptional training base with almost 25 years of experience in learning Hindustani Classical music from Ustad Mashkoor Ali Khansahab and Mubarak Ali Khansahab of the Kirana Gharana, semi classical forms from Smt Sanjukta Ghosh, advanced training in Rabindrasangeet (Swagatalakshmi Dasgupta and Pramita Mallick) and other traditional Bengali songs (Atulprasad, Rajanikanta, D.L.Roy, Nazrulgeeti, Puratoni etc), give him a range of performances that not many of his contemporaries have.
First prize in Dover lane Music Conference talent contest, Swar Prabhat Talent Contest by Salt Lake Cultural Association, Kal Ke Kalakar - Mumbai, National Scholarship from the Govt. of India, the Gyana Pravaha Scholarship, Shanmukhananda Sangeet Shiromani Award from Mumbai and KKMERS Young Achiever Award, are some of the feathers that Sounak has on his cap.
His unique trend setting blending of classical music and other forms of Bengali art music is a treat for the audience and shows his versatility as an artist. He has performed extensively in cities and venues all over India and the United States, Canada, UK, Australia, Singapore, Indonesia, Oman, Kuwait and Bangladesh. Some of the major concerts include the Dover Lane Music Conference (Kolkata), Uttarpara Sangeet Sammelan, Pt. Omkarnath Thakur Sangeet Sammelan(Bharuch), Haridas Swami Sangeet Sammelan(Mumbai), Surdhwani Raga Festival (UK 2005) NABC (USA 2009 and 2015) and Regional Bengali Conference (USA 2010), 150 Years of Tagore CAB – (USA 2011) Art Omi international Music Residency NY - USA(2011)India Festival (Baltimore 2011), to name just a few.
Other than traditional stage performances, he has also emerged as a very successful ideator and script writer for composite programmes. These programmes go beyond just musical entertainments and address social and cultural issues from a broader perspective.
He has worked with personalities like Dhritiman Chaterji, Raima Sen, Rituparna Sengupta, Soumitra Chatterjee, Sankarlal Bhattacharya, Parambrata Chatterjee, Barun Chanda, Bratati Bandyopadhyay, Tanmoy Bose, Purbayan Chatterjee, Subhen Chatterjee, Meeta Vasisht, Usha Uthup, Suman Mukherjee, Sudarshan Chakravorty and Pramita Mallick.
His music albums, published by top brand companies like - Times Music and Asha Audio, have been unique experiments in the field of Rabindrasangeet and have received nominations for best album awards.
As an artist of the young generation Sounak wants to think beyond the stereotypical and challenge conventions. However in doing so, he is never in denial of his roots or the tradition of his Guru Gharanas.
He wants to be different and with his academic and musical education, and a sense of responsibility for his art, he is one person who can make a difference to the world of arts today and contribute towards making it accessible to the younger generation.
Play to listen to the playlist below
The above mentioned performances are just some of Sounak’s major music concerts. He regularly presents Classical Music, Rabindrasangeet and other forms of light classical or Bengali Art Music exclusively on numerous occasions in Kolkata and outside India as well.
"In a never-before multimedia fusion of music, dance, drama, with references to the Bard’s vision of afforestation, legendary actors, elocutionists, and singers have joined hands to spread the Save Earth campaign.
Such a project on Tagorean songs, plays and poems in such a 3-D medley having a typical flavor of Santiniketan, the red earthed Khowai land, skirted by trees had never been seen. "We presented an assortment of Rabindranath Tagore's best works on nature, while retaining the contemporary feel," young vocalist Sounak Chattopadhyay, who had conceptualized the whole idea and assembled the enviable ensemble cast of thespian Soumitra Chattopadhya, veteran actor Barun Chanda, elocutionist Bratati Bandyopadhyay, besides Lopamudra and new age Bengali singer Rupankar Bagchi, said. "
The PTI, on Green Earth - "Shyamol Sukher Dhora"
“…This is no contemporary experiment in jazzing up Tagore. Classics such as Ei udashi haowa, Nil anjana ghana and Mone ki dwidha are present with their pristine exuberance… Sounak takes the exercise to dizzy heights when he renders the spring song, Aji dakhino duar khola, the way Tagore had conceived it, in Raga Bahar…and then juxtaposes his own composition based on the same chalan.
“It is pouring Rabindrasangeet these days; but unfortunately very few gifted singers take the trouble to train their voices properly before plunging in the unfathomable depths of these apparently ‘easy’ sounding compositions. The classical-trained virtuosity of young Sounak Chattopadhyay, therefore, comes as a breath of fresh air in this overcrowded field.”
“…The evening started with a Khayal recital in Raga Shuddha Kalyan by Sounak. This young artist possesses a tuneful and mellifluous voice…. series of slow and mid tempo sargams and taans were most competently executed towards the end of the Vilambit khayal (slow movements). In the drut (fast tempo), portion he presented short and brisk sargams and fast aakar taans with perfection…”
…“The singer’s diction is clear — the songs chosen are full of phonetically difficult word-compounds such as marma-majhare and karuna-arun. The careful pause before taba,so as not to separate the word from its companion,sakarun,though it comes only in the next line, reveals a close reading of Aji kon dhan hotey…”
“… Sounak Chattopadhyay presented short Khayal bandishes in Ragas Megh and Gaud Malhar. His renditions amply bear nuances of his taalim (training). The vilambit Khayal particularly was extremely well sung….”
“… Baaje Korun Surey performed by vocalist Sounak Chattopadhyay was brilliant…”
“…among the young breed of musicians deftly carrying on the tradition is Sounak Chattopadhyay, with his collage of classical bandishes and Tagore’s songs. The song selection is great, not the mainstream ones, though all demand equal respect… this album is both for the light listener as well as the matured music critic.”
“It was a UK debut for Sounak Chatterjee of Kolkata and what a debut it was! It was a performance worthy of a singer twice his age. We are proud to have him for his first concert outside India. Sounak performed the evening melody Raga “Yaman”. His rendition of the ‘Raga’ was of the highest order, expressive, penetrating and active in intonation and dazzling in rhythm. The concluding item of the evening was a short composition on the Raga ‘Basant’ (spring melody). The whole piece was even more marvellously crafted, aesthetically realised and gracefully formal.”
“Sounak started with Raga Multani. This difficult Raga was treated with dexterity and Sounak sang the Vilambit and Drut khayals keeping the intrinsic mood of the Raga intact. The swar-uchchar was accurate and the note combinations of the taan-sargams were exceptional.”
“Mashkoor Ali Khansahab’s renowned disciple Sounak Chatterjee presented the Raga in the ideal style of the Kiarana gayaki and the tans and sargams were crystal clear.”
“A singing sensation with a voice that has wooed a thousand ears”
As an organization, Chinton is five years old and still in its infancy, but they have given the city some of the most exciting and novel presentations in music in the last few years beginning with their trend setting Valentine's Day shows and other programmes. Chinton set sail on February 2009 to celebrate love, to celebrate Valentine's Day in a way that the city of Kolkata probably never saw before. Chinton’s latest Spring concert - "Ronger Jhorna - Colours of Spring", on March 29th, 2013, rocked Kalamandir and has been one of their best productions. Chinton is the brain child of young vocalist Sounak. It is an attempt to propagate fine arts and music among youngsters today and create new audience and awareness for cerebral art music. Parallel to stage productions, Sounak has been quitely training his students in classical music and Ragas and Rabindrasangeet in seperate batches. He introduced and showcased them for the first time at the 2013 spring concert - "Ronger Jhorna". Sounak envisages a bright future for Chinton as an institution of art and music in the years to come as well and the seeds have already been sown. Transcending entertainment but not denying it, Chinton plans to continue on its journey with new shows and new ideas integrating fine arts and socialy relevant issues. Ther latest was also the biggest so far. "Green Earth - Shyamol Sukher Dhora", a concert dedicated to Global warming and the environment as depicted in the works of Rabindranath Tagore, was staged on June 8th, 2013. It was the talk of the town and one of the biggest concerts of the city this summer.