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Omar Chowdhury: The Final Tribute
3 July, 2006
And come he slow, or come he fast,
It is but death who comes at last.
- Marmion (1808), Sir Walter Scott
Nawabzada Omar Ali Chowdhury, lovingly known as Jackie to his friends has passed away. He died from old age complications and cardiac arrest at approximately 1:50a.m. Bangladesh time on Monday 3 July, 2006.
Jackie was the youngest son of Syed Altaf Ali Chowdhury, the last Nawab of Bogra. A man of highest calibre, Jackie was of a restless nature searching for the finer things of life that saw him extensively travelling throughout India, South-East Asia, Italy, United Kingdom, Ireland and as far away places as Canada, USA to Greenwich Village in Manhattan, New York City.
He was the closest of friends of late Satyajit Ray. He ran into Benjamin Britten in his early years - and a friendship was abruptly broken because of their musical differences.
Jackie had always been a great admirer of Richard Wagner and The Ring of which Siegfried and The Valkyrie were his favourites.
Jackie knew all 9 symphonies by Ludwig van Beethoven by heart and would conduct them in his mind to seek refuge from this joyless earth. His favourite piano concerto by Beetohoven being the sombre and graceful No. 4 in G Op. 58, which he always regarded as being the music of death.
In his late years, Jackie took a keen interest in Beethoven’s 32 Piano Sonatas and he would discover new meaning of a certain Sonata each time he played them. A particular interest was shown by him in “Hammerklavier” - Sonata No.29 in B-flat Major, Op. 106.
Using the pen-name Maverick, he was a regular contributor to cricbd.com and seldom missed his weekly As I See It... column.
In the literary circle he was popularly known as Omar Chowdhury. He wrote many shortstories, essays, articles and a superb book on the 1971 Independence War of Bangladesh called Prelude to Bangladesh.
His absence will be a great blow to his many friends. R.I.P.
Jackie wrote in his Requiem on a Keyboard - his tribute to his great friend late Enayetullah Khan:
“It will take time to get used to a world without Enayetullah Khan. He will remain alive in my memory at least, for the few days I have left on this joyless earth.
“Goodnight, sweet prince...”
We Hope, our beloved Jackie, you have found joy at last beyond this joyless earth!
Goodnight, sweet prince...