Bhubaneswar: For their pioneering contributions to Odisha’s culture, several prominent personalities of the State will be conferred with the Orissa Sangeet Natak Akademi awards from the year 2008 to 2011.

Manimala Devi, Veteran Odia actress has been selected for the highest award of the Orissa Sangeet Natak Akademi called the ‘Kabi Samrat Upendra Bhanja’ award for the year 2008. Similarly eminent singer-musician Prafulla Kar, Odissi exponent Priyambada Mohanty Hejmadi and Odia poet and lyricist Rasaraj Narayan Prasad Singh have been selected for the prestigious ‘Kabi Samrat Upendra Bhanja award for 2009, 2010 and 2011 respectively.

The award carries a cash prize of Rs 50, 000 and a citation.

Apart from this names of winners of Akademi awards in 10 different categories have also been announced. For the year 2008, Badal Sikdar (Drama Director), Gobind Chandra Pal (Odissi Dancer), Rajendra Kumar Panda (Actor-Director), Guru Ramahari Das (Odissi vocalist-composer), Guru Shri Dhaneswar Swain (eminent Mardal player), Manoranjan Prusty (Sugam Sangeet), Antaryami Mishra (Poet), Sunil Satpthy (Hindustani vocalist), Kunja Rai (Drama Writer), Gunanidhi Das (Folk Music), will receive the Sangeet Natak Award.

Raghunath Pradhan (Folk dance), Bijay Laxmi Mohanty (Odissi dance), Dhirendra Nath Mallick (Acting/Direction), Bankim Sethy (Odissi Vocalist), Prafulla Bala (Instrumental Music), Chita Ranjan Jena (Sugam Sangeet), Lalratnakar Singh (poetry), Indrani Mishra (Hindustani Music), Gopal Chandra Patnaik (Drama Writer) and Upendra Panigrahi (Folk Music)for the year 2009.

The awardees for the year 2010 are Ladukishore Pani (Folk dance), Niranjan Rout (Odissi Dance), Ajit Narayan Das (Acting/Direction), Indira Pratihari (Odissi vocalist), Naveen Chandra Bose (Instrumental Music), Dibakar Mohanty (Sugam Sangeet), Nimai Charan Mohanty (poetry), Rajnikanta Padhi (Hindustani Vocalist), Dr Panchanan Mishra (Drama Writer) and Gopabandhu Nath (Folk Music).

Simanchal Mandal (Folk dance), Gita Mahalik (Odissi Dance), Kedar Apat (Acting/Direction), Binapani Nayak (Odissi Vocalist), Dayanidhi Behera (Instrumental Music), Trupti Das (Sugam Sangeet), Snehalata Mohanty (poetry), Sadhu Umacharan Das (Hindustani Vocalist), Manath Satpathy (Drama writer) and Bisakha Rana (Folk Music) for the year 2011.

All of them will be awarded with a cash prize of Rs 25,000.