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August - 2017
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Besides a few private teachers, western classical instruments are taught only at the Calcutta School of Music and the Oxford Mission. One or two offshoots of the Mission school have however, also been formed to cater to the needs of the musical students. So, the supply of devoted musicians, continue although most of them revert back to other form of occupation due sheer lack of any promotional agency.

Observing the plight of these trained but unemployed musicians and feeling the lack of a classical orchestra in Calcutta, Mrs. Frances Caterini of the erstwhile USIS formed the first professional orchestra playing classical music. She has started a social welfare activity group called the Calcutta Foundation, and as this orchestra was made a part of this group, it was aptly named the Calcutta Foundation Orchestra.

The orchestra thrived due to the very hard work put up by Mrs. Caterini, who, being a, often conducted the orchestra herself. She organized a number of annual performances against guaranteed payments with which the foundation could defray the cost of maintaining these professional musicians.

Eventually, Mrs. Caterini also left India, but arranged a regular fixed donation from the USA to take care of part of the costs of operation. The Foundation continued under Mrs. Shamlu Dudeja, who also ably managed the orchestra till the tenth year. During that period many conductors from abroad were brought for short tenures mainly with the finance from some music loving NRIs. It was however, became increasingly difficult to manage the orchestra financially, administratively and technically, mainly due to the other occupations of the Foundation and lack of expertise in the area of western classical music. It was proposed that the Calcutta School of Music would take over the orchestra
 
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