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A.R.Rahman (Fan Club) (Page 117)

dayita Goldie
dayita
dayita

Joined: 01 May 2006
Posts: 1896

Posted: 05 June 2006 at 11:46am | IP Logged
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May 28, 2006, 7:39PM
THEATER REVIEW
Hooray for Bollywood? Not in this case
Flash comes before substance in the clichd tale Bombay Dreams

By EVERETT EVANS
Copyright 2006 Houston Chronicle

Beneath Bombay Dreams' veneer of exoticism beats a heart that is pure Las Vegas.

The notion of a musical about Bollywood (India's thriving film industry) held promise. Yet Bombay Dreams' mix of splashy production numbers and melodramatic kitsch, while occasionally diverting, is seldom involving and ultimately undistinguished.

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Much revised from London to Broadway, Bombay Dreams has been revised again for the touring production giving its Houston premiere at Hobby Center.

The plot centers on Akaash, a lad of the Bombay slums, who dreams of becoming a Bollywood star. As he sings in one of Don Black's hackneyed lyrics: "Like an eagle was born to fly/Right across the open sky/I was born to be seen/On a screen/In Bollywood." Actually, Akaash, and his show, were born to recycle every old showbiz clich in their new Bollywood setting.

The story's lack of credibility is epitomized by the pivotal early scene in which Akaash participates in a protest that breaks up the Miss India pageant. Security there must be woefully lax, because not only is the pageant interrupted, but Akaash proceeds to hog the spotlight for an entire "rap" number. No one stops him. When he's finished, Rani, the reigning Bollywood movie queen (whose number he wrecked) is ready to sign him as her new co-star — his big break!

Adding to the scene's unlikeliness is the fact that Sachin Bhatt's Akaash, though energetic and likable enough, has nothing like the charismatic star power the other characters keep insisting he projects. His strutting and posturing, in his pageant-stopping turn and elsewhere, seem like stock imitations of John Travolta in Saturday Night Fever. Yet he keeps eliciting such jaw-dropping assessments as "You're a firecracker, Akaash — I just lit the fuse." Puh-lease!

Once the trite tale sets Akaash on the path to stardom, he conceals his slum roots and turns his back on his friends, including loyal, eunuch buddy Sweetie, and even his dear old granny. Will Akaash see the error of his ways in time to save their slum from being bulldozed by a greedy developer? Will he choose egomaniacal sexpot Rani or idealistic, independent filmmaker Priya — who is herself in danger of marrying the cutthroat lawyer who pretends to be helping the slum-dwellers but is really in league with the developer?

The book (by Meera Syal and Thomas Meehan) can't seem to settle on a tone. Half the time, it aims for glib spoof. Typifying this is Kitty DeSouza, the Joan Rivers-like gossip maven of Bollywood (a preposterous cartoon, though amusingly enacted by Christine Toy Johnson). Carried away with fame, Akaash says things like "Ciao, baby!" When Akaash, rehearsing a love scene with Priya, finally gets it right, she echoes My Fair Lady: "By George, I think you've got it."

Even Sweetie, claiming to be Akaash's agent after the kid's break, turns wise guy when asked his name: "William Morris."

The rest of the time, the show's take on moviedom's behind-the-scenes back-stabbing and heartache seems informed chiefly by such Hollywood howlers as Valley of the Dolls and The Oscar. Hard-bitten veteran Rani spouts such gems as "I've survived in this snakepit for 15 years!" Paging Susan Hayward.

The show gains some genuine feeling with a dead-serious plot turn late in Act 2 — but lapses back for a cartoonishly cute resolution of the wedding-day showdown between hero and villain.

Top Indian film composer A.R. Rahman's music has its moments of authenticity and surges of feeling and melody in the better ballads such as Is This Love? and Hero. Yet the numbers lean heavily on repetition, too often lapsing into sound-alike pop wallpaper. Even the best tunes are not much helped by Black's lyrics, which are pedestrian at best, ridiculous at their Shakalaka Baby worst.

That production number is the show's signature "wet sari" routine, with the dancers cavorting in an onstage fountain to a jingly beat. Yes, it's eye-catchingly colorful and superficially exotic. Like all the show's production numbers, it's also long on spectacle, short on substance.

Bhatt's sturdy-voiced Akaash is more palatable in his later, chastened phase than the cocky posturing of his early scenes. His two leading ladies are quite good: sleek Sandra Allen as the spoiled-rotten Rani and Reshma Shetty as the serious-minded Priya. Aneesh Sheth has some moving scenes and sings expertly as the self-sacrificing Sweetie, hopelessly in love with Akaash.

Director Baayork Lee keeps it all moving, the story told in brisk, broad strokes. Lisa Stevens' choreography is lively and vividly performed, though the moves sometimes resemble aerobics routines. The production values are (inevitably) colorful and exotic.

Yet ultimately and overall, the show that promised a genuine Indian feast settles for curry-flavored bubble gum.

everett.evans@chron.com

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/ent/arts/theater/3911973 .html

dayita Goldie
dayita
dayita

Joined: 01 May 2006
Posts: 1896

Posted: 05 June 2006 at 11:49am | IP Logged
Reservation Inspires a Song
 

Agencies

Mumbai, May 29: It really seems like a season for Bollywood to flex its muscle for a 'cause'. But we're not surprised when Bollywood's favourite rap star Blaaze comes up with a song called Ban The Crooked Police, against all the lathi charges and 'official duty' against students during the reservation protests.

Blaaze and Sagar Desai's group ZambeZi FunK has previously spun songs themed on Sankaracharya and Gujarat rape victim Bilkis Bano.

"It wasn't just one TV or press report that inspired us to come up with Ban The Crooked Police," says 30-year-old Chennai-based Ramesh Blaaze Raman in a telephonic interview, "A couple of weeks ago, we kept noticing too much stuff about the reservation issue to be unaffected."

So one night, the reggae number with lines like 'Ban the wicked police, Ban the crooked police… love the police,' came into being. "I was very inspired by Bob Marley too, who did his stuff and died. Even today, we're looking upto him in songs like Get Up, Stand Up and Freedom Song."

But why include phrases like 'Love the police' in an anti-cop song? Blaaze assures us that he's not sitting on the fence - it's as simple as bad cop vs good cop.

"I also think that the police are usually portrayed in a way that only highlights their negative side. We are not against the system in this song, but only ban the police who are not good."

ZambeZi Funk plans to release the number as a single as soon as it finds a record label to promote it and is extremely satisfied with the support it has been receiving from music channels such as MTV, VH1 and Channel [V].

"We didn't even have a record label backing In My Father's Words, our song on Sankaracharya last year, but these channels played it for three months because the audience wanted to see it," adds Blaaze. A video, which "will break the tension and surprise but the not shock" is also in making.

A favourite with A R Rahman, Blaaze will next be heard in Pray For Me Brother, a song commissioned by the United Nations, while Sagar is composing the background score for a yet-to-be-released film Valley of Flowers, starring Milind Soman.

 
http://www.daijiworld.com/news/news_disp.asp?n_id=21996& n_tit=Reservation+Inspires+a+Song
dayita Goldie
dayita
dayita

Joined: 01 May 2006
Posts: 1896

Posted: 05 June 2006 at 12:05pm | IP Logged
Bappi Lahiri and AR Rahman team up
By IndiaFM News Bureau, May 25, 2006 - 02:40 IST
Until a couple of years back, Bappi Lahiri was almost lost amongst the new composer crowd in Bollywood. A couple of his albums followed but it was with Vishal-Shekhar's Boombai Nagariya which he sung with a retro charm that put him back in the public eye… or should we say ear. That was the first time that Bappi had sung for any other music composer.

And now Bappi has taken to the mike, once again. He recently completed recording the title track of Mani Ratnam's Guru, composed by none other than A.R.Rahman. Few people know that Rahman and Lahiri have known each other since a very long time. Lahiri was only too happy to work with the maestro. In fact, he is not hesitant to say that according to him, Rahman is the best from among his contemporaries.

A seven minute song, the lyrics of the title track has been penned by Gulzar. In fact, they were all so well prepared that the recording was completed in a single night. Bappi da didn't want to talk too much about the lyrics of the song, at this stage. But we do know that it will be used for the credits of the film. Everyone was satisfied with the end result of the song. Bappi is now open to more playback singing, provided he gets good numbers.

http://www.indiafm.com/news/2006/05/25/7173/
A.S.P.I.R.E IF-Rockerz
A.S.P.I.R.E
A.S.P.I.R.E

Joined: 25 September 2005
Posts: 8483

Posted: 05 June 2006 at 12:19pm | IP Logged
Hey Dayita ... dear, thank you for being an integral part of this club .. you have done and are doing so much for this club ... how are you doing ? i am finally back home now ... hope to be online more often and contribute as much as I can .. probably nothing in comparison to what you do ...
and your lyrics section is just superb ... !! thanks a bunch for that as well ! Big smile
A.S.P.I.R.E IF-Rockerz
A.S.P.I.R.E
A.S.P.I.R.E

Joined: 25 September 2005
Posts: 8483

Posted: 05 June 2006 at 12:21pm | IP Logged
how is everyone else .. ???
I think there is only one new member .. and I will update the list right away .. !
dayita Goldie
dayita
dayita

Joined: 01 May 2006
Posts: 1896

Posted: 05 June 2006 at 12:29pm | IP Logged

Originally posted by A.S.P.I.R.E

Hey Dayita ... dear, thank you for being an integral part of this club .. you have done and are doing so much for this club ... how are you doing ? i am finally back home now ... hope to be online more often and contribute as much as I can .. probably nothing in comparison to what you do ...
and your lyrics section is just superb ... !! thanks a bunch for that as well ! Big smile

Hey Swetha, I am better now..how was your trip?Hope to see you online regularly now.And lyrics section..i need some time to make the notations ..Smile

dayita Goldie
dayita
dayita

Joined: 01 May 2006
Posts: 1896

Posted: 05 June 2006 at 12:32pm | IP Logged
A.R. Rehman's house raided
By IndiaFM News Bureau, October 26, 2005 - 05:40 IST
Music maestro A.R. Rehman's house was raided by Income Tax officials on the wee hours of the morning today. Apart from him, a lot of South stars houses were raided as well. The Income Tax officials started the raids by 8 AM and are still going on as we speak. A lot of top Bollywood stars homes have been raided in the recent past. The list includes Salman Khan, Aishwarya Rai, Urmila Matondkar and Shahrukh Khan.

Let's hope A.R. Rehman hasn't done any Mangal in his returns.
http://www.indiafm.com/news/2005/10/26/6097/index.html
A.S.P.I.R.E IF-Rockerz
A.S.P.I.R.E
A.S.P.I.R.E

Joined: 25 September 2005
Posts: 8483

Posted: 05 June 2006 at 12:37pm | IP Logged
Originally posted by dayita

Originally posted by A.S.P.I.R.E

Hey Dayita ... dear, thank you for being an integral part of this club .. you have done and are doing so much for this club ... how are you doing ? i am finally back home now ... hope to be online more often and contribute as much as I can .. probably nothing in comparison to what you do ...
and your lyrics section is just superb ... !! thanks a bunch for that as well ! Big smile
Hey Swetha, I am better now..how was your trip?Hope to see you online regularly now.And lyrics section..i need some time to make the notations ..Smile
Were you unwell Dayita ?? I am glad to hear that you are better now .. My trip was simply awesome .. Had much fun ... Yeah, I hope to be online very regularly now as well ... what do you mean by notations ??? is there any way I can help you with that ?

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