Raga - Darbari Kanada 1
Ustad Azizul Islam,a leading flute player of Bangladesh,once a sailor by profession,from the first batch of Marine Academy,Chittagong,was born in District Rajbari(then serving place of his father)on May 02nd,1944.
He passed Matric from Govt. Muslim High School Chittagong, Intermediate from Chittagong College & then joined Marine Academy, Ctg, to join Sea.
His first Guru (preceptor) in music was late priyada Ranjan sen Guopta of Arya sangeet samity,Chittagong, and after a short period of learning from him he took the pupilage of classical vocalist ustad vilayat ali khan of Agra Gharana ,who used to riside at Chittagong. In he process flute maestro panna lal Ghosh become his source of inspiration anathfinder as well. This unable him during his long voyages to practice fervently and spend time in mastering his chosen filed of art .
When capt. Islam decided to give up his seafaring days in 1973,and was stationed at Chittagong ,all avenues of Learning and practice regularly with musical hands (Tabla and Tanpora)become possible and he took pupilage of famous Sarod wizard .late Ustad Bahadur khan,to acquire Knowledge of performing style of Seni Gharana. He also had the privilege to receive practical guidance from famous flute player Late Pandit Devendra Murdeshwar and also Pandit V.g Karnad both disciples of the great flute maestro late Pandit Panna Lal Ghosh.
While leading a hazardous life of a sailor, at times he faced some obstacles to fulfil his dream as an artist. His life as a sailor put a barrier on him to remain under the guidance of any Ustad but the creative urge inside helped him a lot to emerge as amaster and to practice fervently. His life on the sea, on the other hand, provided him enough seclusion and time to sharpen his skill at fluteplaying. He used to spend his time on the ship mostly listening to the records of the flute maestro, late Pannalal Ghosh and other famous classical musicians. After leaving sea in 1973, he had the privilege of becoming the disciple of late Ustad Bahadur Khan, the famous Sarod player, to acquire the knowledge of performing style of Seni Gharana. Then he received lessons from two famous flutes, Late Pt. Devendra Murdeshwar and Pt. VG Karnad, both disciples of late Pt. Pannalal Ghosh. It is Pt. VG Karnad’s guidance and lessons that have him considerably in his musical life.
The main inspiration behind Ustad Azizul Islams lovely flute playing, of course, come from the sea. Its immense blue coupled with the lonely days he had as a sailor has not only filled his soul with yearning for the unbounded beauty of nature but has also set in a deep tenor in his flute tunes. Listening to Ustad Aziz flute renderings one will be reminded of what the Persian poet Rumi once said that a flute in its tune actually cries for uniting with the mother bamboo from which it came. His tune also evoke what Tagore once wanted to understand as when he said that his only secret world is known to nobody but to his flute. Ustad Islams flute transports us into the deeper reaches of the heart.
Ustad Azizul Islams flute performances have been held in a wide number of places in Bangladesh, India, Europe and Australia and even where had drawn rousing reception. He was accorded honours and gold medals by various organizations for his memorable performance. His salo flute recital programs were organized in Kolkata by Sangeet Research Academy, Saptasur, Salt lake music festival and in the Habitat Centre of Delhi as the first Bangladeshi artist. He also participated in programs organized by Rotary clubs of Salt Lake and also Rotary club of Kalighat in Kolkata. Shelter Promotion Council in Delhi, all these earned him wide applause, popularity and respect from the audiences of the Indian subcontinent. Internationally reputed Indian Tabla player Ustad Sabir Khan, Pandit Samar Saha and Pandit Subhen Chatterjee accompanied him in number of programs held in Chittagong, Dhaka, Kolkata and Delhi.
Ustad Islam had the rare privilege to perform "Jugal Bandi" with the great Violin Maestro Pandit V.G. Jog [ Padma Bhusan ] in Kolkata and also at Dhaka, which were highly appreciated by house full of audiences.
On Pahela Baishakh, 1406 [ 14th April 1999 ], Bengali new year, a day lone program at D.C. Hill park, Chittagong was inaugurated by Ustad Islam in the early hours by his " Thumri Bhairavi " on flute which kept thousand of audiences spellbound. He also performed in music programs organized by Shilpakala Academy, Bangla Academy, National Museum, National Press Club, Sangeet Prasar Goshti, Bengal Foundation, Hindol, Sangeet Bhaban, Institute of Architects Dhaka, in memory of Badrul Islam [ younger brother of Azizul Islam ] organized by Economic Accociation, University of Chittagong and many other cultural organizations.
Monthly SARGAM, a widely circulated only monthly music magazine of Bangladesh, organized a program at Dhaka on 21st April 2001 where he was honored with the totle of USTAD in presence of houseful audience of music lovers.
Many Rotary Clubs in Bangladesh namely Rotary Clubs of Agrabad, Islamabad, Srimangal, Sonargaon, Dhaka, Dhaka North East, Jahangirnagar Dhaka, Metropolitan Dhaka and Rangamati organized his solo flute program and honored him. Rotary International District 3280 also organized his solo program at Dhaka. He was specially honored by Rotary Club of Metropolitan Chittagong, Rotary club of Kalighat Kolkata, Shelter promotion Council [ Monish Kairala Memorial Award ] Delhi, National Museum Dhaka and Bangladesh Surveyors Association, Chittagong. A regular performer of Radio Bangladesh and Television Ustad Azizul Islam also had the rare privilege to be on the air through " Voice of Planet ", a U.S.Television Channel.
He was awared Gold Medal and Crest jointly by Rotary Club of Metropolitan Dhaka and Ashfaque-Najma Foundation for his contribution in the music sphere. He was also recognized by the Rotary International Dist. 3280 for his extraordinary talent in music.
He has the unique distinction of participating in Port Fairy Spring Music Festival, Australia where he presented the Indian Classical Music before of the Australian Audiences. There he is the first Artist among the artists of the subcontinent to perform in this prestigious venue which is also graced by the classical artists of the most prestigious musical conference of India, Dover lane Music Conference he got the rare opportunity to participate in the inaugural ceremony in the golden jubilee year of that festival, where he kept the audience spell bound with his sonorous renderings. He also performed in Melba Hall, Melbourne, Australia and Bangladesh Language and Cultural Foundation, Singapore. His presentation there attracted large audience and earned him big applause's.
In addition to his music and business, Ustad Islam is also connected with various social activities. He is an active Rotarian, PHF and also was the President of Rotary Club of Islamabad RI Dist.3280