Saturday, November 05, 2005

RKN on music, veena, Doreswamy Iyengar and all that!

I was looking for something else, when I stumbled on this interview of Gowri Ramnarayan (who else) with RK Narayan. RKN talks about music, his informal veena lessons, his friendship with Doreswamy Iyengar, and many other things. RKN seems to be very unhappy about the cassette player that Gowri uses to record the interview. First he says,
What is this? A cassette player? Why don't you take notes instead?
and, then
Do you have to stick the record player at my nose?
The interview is also full of the typical RKN-ian descriptions like this:
English literature must not be taught in English. It must be taught in an Indian language to make an impact. But our teachers don't know this. (Nor, for that matter, do they know much English.) What I did was to teach him poems like "Ode to a Nightingale" (which he found very difficult) in Tamil and Kannada. Doreswamy began to appreciate them so much that he would say, "Keats has so much manodharma!"
On the whole, a very nice read.

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