A touch of grandeur surrounded the The Daily Star-Bengal Arts Precinct yesterday, as Star Melodies hosted “Tagore- 20th Century Bard in his Prime”. Star Melodies is an initiative by The Daily Star to regularly promote Bangla music. In presence of many distinguished guests, the marquee event saw acclaimed artistes Adity Mohsin and Fahim Hossain Chowdhury take center-stage. It was hosted by Sadya Afreen Mallick, Chief of Culture Initiatives, The Daily Star.
The event was to commemorate the works of Rabindranath Tagore after he entered his prime years – up until he reached his twilight as one of the greatest poets to ever live.
Alongside the renowned singers were promising students from Sunnydale School, who opened the program with their astonishing performance. Inclusion of students from different schools, colleges and universities is a regular feature in Star Melodies' endeavours, so as to encourage young talents to stay in the cultural mix. The children lit up the hall, which was filled to the brim since the very beginning of the event. They surprised the audience with their eloquence in pronunciation and immaculate recreation of Tagore's classics, Aaj Dhaner Khetey Roudro Chayay Lukochuri Khela, Tomar Mohon Roope Ke Roy Bhule, and Dekho Dekho Dekho, Shuktara Aankhi Mele Chaay.
Fahim Hossain Chowdhury, the recipient of this year's Bangla Academy Rabindra Award was at his best when he sang renditions of Keno Chokher Jole, Amar Khela Jokhon Chilo Tomar Sone, Aaji Nahi Nahi Nidra among others. “Even though I believe that the core essence of Tagore's compositions stay the same throughout his life, there are some noticeable changes,” says Chowdhury, “For example, in his twilight years, he wrote a lot more devotional songs.
Adity Mohsin is widely regarded as one of the finest exponents of Rabindra Sangeet in the country today. “Tagore is not just a musician, he is a subliminal entity, a philosopher.” she said before her much anticipated performance. “The practice, performance and general exposure to Tagore songs can enlighten a person internally.” After she took the stage, she enthralled the audience with her majestic voice. Among the tracks she sang were her renditions of Ami Tomar Shonge Bendhechhi Amar Pran, Bipul Torongo Rey, Ogo Tumi Ponchodoshi, Choron Dhorite Dio Go among others. Near the end of the event, the performers and audience sang the national anthem together in what was a truly heart-warming moment.
Even after the night of captivating melodies ended, the alluring beauty of Rabindra Sangeet stayed with the audience. Expectations were already sky-high from artistes of such caliber, but the event managed to exceed them, encapsulating the beauty of Tagore at his most emphatic years.