Bangla (from left) members Kaartik, Anusheh and Buno perform at the Bangladesh-China Friendship Conference Centre. Photo: Neloy Hossain
On Saturday evening, folk fusion band 'Bangla' took over the ongoing music festival 'Fete de la Musique,' organised by Alliance Française. The event was incorporated with the grand finale of another music festival 'Muzica Carnival,' organised by Classic Event Management, and was held at Bangladesh-China Friendship Conference Centre. A full house, comprising mostly young music lovers, enjoyed the concert featuring performances by Faisal Siddiqui Bogey (of the band Renaissance), Shahjahan Munshi, Laura, Shawjeeb, Dipto and the young musicians of Ecole De Musique (Alliance Française's music school), along with the hugely popular Bangla.
The show started with an hour-long instrumental performance by the students of Ecole De Musique. The young artistes demonstrated their skills on guitar, violin and cello, interpreting works of master composers Mozart, Beethoven and Bizet. Deputy director of Alliance Française, Jaques Bounin, delivered a short speech providing information on the music festival. Fete de la Musique is celebrated every year in more than 300 cities of 100 countries. With an intention to celebrate the musical diversity, Alliance Française has been organising this festival in Bangladesh since 1986. This year, the festival is being held at different venues including Alliance Française (Uttara and Dhanmondi branch), Gulshan Club, Dhaka University and Bangladesh-China Friendship Conference Centre.
Amidst much cheer, the members of Bangla took on the stage. An urban band with the essence of Baul music, Bangla interprets Lalon's and other timeless folk songs with jazz/ blues/ rock approach. The lead vocalist of the band, Anusheh Anadil started with a Lalon song, "Sonar manush bhashchhe roshey," articulating the central philosophy of Lalon, asking all to recognise the Divine who lives within every human. Soon the audience rocked and swayed with Anusheh's vocals, and the pulsating beats of 'dhol.' Among others, Bangla performed its popular number "Moriley kandishna amar daye." Originally composed by Durbin Shai, the song was Bangla's moving tribute to the King of Pop Michel Jackson.
Bangla member, Kaartik, presented a well-known Tagore song "Amar pran-er manush achhey praney," with Anushey providing back-up vocals. The song belongs to the Baul genre and Bangla took the liberty to present the song in its own style. "Mon diya pora shon madrassa-e," was a new song by the band speaking of the Sufi teachings that recognise seeking knowledge as the most important aspect of life. The crowd went wild with Buno's guitar and Nazrul's 'dhol.' The performance also included the celebrated Lalon song "Emon manob shomaj kobe go srijon hobey."
Fete de la Musique will continue till July 2. Muzica Carnival started on June 26. The latter included instrumental performances (both traditional and western), workshops on music, and performances by 14 underground bands and uprising stars, photography and painting exhibitions.