|ARTS TRIBUNE||Friday, June 7, 2002, Chandigarh, India|
Works of Indian masters for Singapore show
Visual arts is receiving greater prominence in the 25-day International Arts Festival which concludes in Singapore on June 23. The festival with a distinct Asian flavour showcases classical, contemporary and cutting-edge performances. Among the visual arts exhibitions are two organised by India and Paris.
man as Shaheed’s father
of Indian masters for Singapore show
Visual arts is receiving greater prominence in the 25-day International Arts Festival which concludes in Singapore on June 23. The festival with a distinct Asian flavour showcases classical, contemporary and cutting-edge performances. Among the visual arts exhibitions are two organised by India and Paris. Lalit Kala Akademi will bring to Singapore a breathtaking collection spanning 30 years of contemporary Indian art. Featuring key Indian masters such as M.F. Husain, B.C. Sanyal, K.K. Hebbar and Ratan Wadke, the exhibition will showcase the works of two generations of artists from India. The show will be on from June 14 to 23.
On June 15 Sangamam will break new ground in the classical music genre by uniting and revisiting the works of some of the greatest 18th century musical minds from the East and West through the use of rich and versatile ethnic instruments of the East. Led by L. Vaidyanathan of India, the Singapore Indian orchestra will communicate through a range of traditional Indian instruments, classical vocalists as well as a mix of Chinese, Malay and Western instruments to give that special Asian flavour.
One can listen to an adaptation of Mozart’s masterpieces through this unique orchestra and then witness a unique crossover between the works of famous 18th century Western composer Antonio Vivaldi and his classical Indian counterpart Sri Thyagaraja.
The new physicality in Indian dance was on show on June 2 and 3 by the Daksha Sheth Dance Company (India). No Indian choreographer has explored as many different forms as Daksha Sheth . Drawing from traditions of kathak and chhau dance, Indian martial arts, yoga and gymnastics, Daksha and her talented performers have crafted their own visual and physical dance language, often in unexpected and surprising ways that confound those who try to pigeon-hole her.
The three-week programme will feature 300 performances from 16 countries. Some of the performances are world premiers. In music from Bach to Cage, Nyman to Tan Dun, Murray Perahia to Margaret Leng Tan from among the world’s oldest musical establishments to new ensembles and world music bands music lovers will discover music-making by the finest composers, soloists and ensembles.
man as Shaheed’s father
The transformation of this ‘angry young man’ to the subdued father of Shaheed Udham Singh is not only evident on screen but has also affected his outlook in life. He is Ranjan Koshal, who is playing Bhagat Singh’s father in the Deol home production "23rd March 1931: Shaheed". Ranjan stopped in Chandigarh on way to his hometown Ahmedgarh to watch this most significant picture of his career with his family members when it releases on June 7.
"Playing the role of Bhagat Singh’s father was a new experience," says Ranjan. "The character was strong yet subdued, showing an array of emotions in a silent way," he adds. Had it not been for his experience with stage plays, the portrayal of this role could have proved to be a difficult task.
Ranjan started his career in movies with a negative role in "Sailaab", a stamp that later stuck with him in others like "Mohabbat", "Tilak", "Dulara" and "Darmiyan". It was Kalpana Lajmi who gave him his first positive role in her award- winning film "Daman".
However, the nature of
roles does not matter to him any more. "The industry has gone
through a sea change over the years, with the line between positive and
negative roles becoming blurred," says Ranjan. "What matters
is the substance of the role, not its nature," he adds.
On his dream role, he gives you a multiple choice to take your pick. "I would like to do something like what Shah Rukh Khan did in ‘Darr’ or Amitabh Bachchan in ‘Deewar’ or Akshay Kumar in ‘Ajnabee’", he says. He prefers a meaningful role, not villainy just for violence’s sake.
In cousin Rikku Rakesh Nath, secretary of Madhuri Dixit and producer in his own right, Ranjan has a Godfather. He says had it not been for Rikku, it would have been difficult for him to enter the industry. "Though I was experienced in terms of acting on stage, looking at the competition it could have been a long wait before I got a decent break," he says gratefully. Ranjan has worked with the Shriram Centre of Art and Culture in Delhi and with Prithvi Theatre.
FARMAAISH (Sony): Padma Bhushan Begum Akhtar was nearly synonymous with ghazal singing. She remains the yardstick by which today’s singers are measured.
The appeal of her emotive rendering was accentuated by the fact that she usually composed most of her ghazals in ragas and each of them had a distinctive classical flavour. Her choice of poets was also faultless.
Almost all her ghazals and geets are immortal. What makes this album remarkable is that it is a live recording of a concert held on January 16, 1957, at the residence of Khatau Valabhdas. It contains some ghazals and geets never published before. That should be a great bonus for her millions of fans.
Old mono recordings make one realise how much the advent of stereo has meant for projecting the real talent of an artiste. Being so old, the recordings are patchy at times but Begum Akhtar is a sheer delight. How one wishes her magic could have been preserved even better!
BADHAI HO BADHAI (University): The Satish Kaushik film describes itself as "a bouquet of melodies, full of mithaas and mohabbat". The same can be said about its music rendered by Anu Malik as well.
The leitmotif of the album is the song Teri zindagi mein pyaar hai to sab kuchh hai … because it has been repeated thrice in different versions. First, it is rendered by Alka Yagnik, KK and chorus, then comes the second version by Alka Yagnik and chorus, to be followed by KK and chorus. It is a sweet number no doubt but three versions!
The title song has been sung by Udit Narayan in his typical fun and frolic style.
The rest of the cassette is a mixed bag of traditional and experimental. In the first category are numbers like Thehro zara … (Alka Yagnik, Sonu Nigam), Dil bata mere dil bata … (Sonu Nigam and chorus) and Raag banke pyaar chhaye … (Alka Yagnik, Shaan and chorus).
New singers tread their own paths in the other category. It is the freshness of their voices that make the songs worthwhile. One is Jogan jogan … by Preeti-Pinky, Kunal and chorus, and the other Dil vich vich rukda dil vich vich chalda … (Anuradha Sriram, Sonu Nigam and chorus).
At least this song shows that Javed Akhtar has gone totally professional.
SURYA (Times Music): The Times group has specialised in spiritual albums. The latest album is dedicated to Surya, the sun, the absolute form of Brahma, the beautiful Lord of the universe and the preceptor of gods.
The album begins with an invocation to this source of spiritual illumination and the universal giver of light and energy. Then follow a commentary in the voice of Harish Bhimani and Gayatri Mantra, which invokes the divine power of the Surya.
The album also features the Surya Namaskar Mantra and Surya Sahasthranaam.