Kishore Kumar's ex-wife and singer-actress Ruma Guha Thakurta passes away

Updated: Jun 03, 2019, 14:07 IST | mid-day online desk | Kolkata

Founder of the Calcutta Youth Choir (CYC), which played a stellar role in popularising mass songs in Bengal, Ruma Guha passes away at the age of 84

Ruma Guha Thakurta
Ruma Guha Thakurta

Celebrated Bengali singer-actress Ruma Guha Thakurta died at her residence here on Monday following old age-related problems, family sources said. She was 84.

Founder of the Calcutta Youth Choir (CYC), which played a stellar role in popularising 'gana sangeet' or mass songs in Bengal, she showcased her talent in a number of Hindi and Bengali movies working with celebrated directors like Satyajit Ray, Tapan Sinha and Tarun Majumdar.

Born in 1934,  Ruma Ghosh married legendary singer Kishore Kumar in 1951, and the couple's only child Amit Kumar was born next year. The couple divorced in 1958 and that year Guha Thakurta formed the CYC with composer Salil Chowdhury and Ray.

The choir rendered with aplomb the Bengali translations of popular mass songs from various languages. Their discs were lapped up by music lovers.

In 1974, the CYC, under her direction, won the first prize at the Copenhagen Youth Festival.

After her divorce from Kishore Kumar, she married Arup Guha Thakurta. They have a son Ayan and a daughter Sramana, a noted singer.

She has done playback for a number of films including "Lukochuri", "Tin Kanya" (directed by Ray), "Baksho Badal" and "Amitra Kumbher Sandhane".

Beginning with the Hindi film "Jwar Bhata" in 1944, she acted in "Mashaal", "Afsar" and "Rag Rang" in Bollywood, before moving into Bengali films with Rajen Tarafdar's classic "Ganga" in 1952.

Under Ray's direction, Guha Thakurta acted in "Abhijaan" and "Ganasahtru" while playing prominent roles in three of Sinha's films "Nirjan Saikate", "Khaniker Atithi" and "Wheel Chair".

Majumdar directed her in "Polatak", "Balika Bodhu" and the evergreen comedy "Dadar Kirti". She also acted in Aparna Sen's maiden directorial venture "36 Chowringhee Lane".

In 2006, she acted in Mira Nair's English movie "The Namesake", which was her last film.

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