New Academic Session Starts in HRAA
On April 1, 2018, the Helena Roerich Academy of Arts for Children (HRAA) running in the Roerich Estate in Naggar under the aegis of the International Roerich Memorial Trust once again opened its doors to the local children desirous of mastering the basics of arts.
Since several years, the gifted teachers of the Academy have been imparting the knowledge of painting, dance, music and vocal to the little residents of Naggar and neighbouring villages. The students get a chance to learn Indian classical, folk and also Russian dances and songs, and take part in international cultural events like painting competitions coordinated by Russian organizations, which significantly underscores the image and role of the IRMT as an Indo-Russian cultural center.
In accordance with tradition, the programme started with the puja of Sarasvati, the goddess of arts and learning. The puja was held in the painting classroom which houses a small altar with an image of this deity.
Addressing the young audience at the opening ceremony, the Russian Curator of the IRMT Mrs. Larisa Surgina drew their attention to the fact that HRAA is a unique institution being connected with the Roerich Estate and enjoying the unseen patronage and presence of the highly creative and spiritual Roerich family. She cordially greeted the little students and wished them success in the coming academic year.
Then the teachers of the Academy took turns to introduce themselves. They urged the students to be diligent and industrious, and make most of their time in the Academy.
At the close of the function, students received certificates (that came all the way from Russia!) for taking part in the children’s painting competition. The competition was held in the Academy in 2017 as a part of the international competition “The Sound and Colour of Roerich’s Realm” conducted annually by the administration of the Leningrad Region, Russia, with the active support of the St. Petersburg chapter of the International Centre of the Roerichs, Moscow (ICR). As in the previous competitions, the participants’ works were sent to Russia. Such events are a regular occurrence in the Academy and a rare privilege of its students.
Classes started immediately after the ceremony but admission is still open and the children of Kullu Valley are most welcome.