Remembering Sushilarani Patel


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MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA           AUGUST 15, 2014           11.45 P.M.

 

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Sushilarani Patel, a classical singer par excellence, but an almost forgotten classical singer, died on July 24, 2014 in Mumbai at the age of 96.

 

SUSHILARANI PATEL

SUSHILARANI PATEL

 

The name Sushilarani Patel is not going to evoke any memories.

The name Baburao Patel is also not going to evoke even faint recognition.

The name of a magazine called ” Filmindia “ is almost forgotten.

Film ” Draupadi ” [ 1944 ] does not exist for this generation.

Film ” Gwalan ” [ 1946 ] is unknown even to die-hard film connoisseurs.

The song ” … LAGAT NAZAR TORI CHHALAIYA … ” is a distant memory.

So why I am writing this obituary ?

Let me unravel the mystery one by one.

I am writing this blog to pay my obeisance to Sushilarani Patel, a classical singer par excellence. It is sad irony of fate that she is relatively unknown compared to her other illustrious colleague Kishori Amonkar, though they both are disciples of the same teacher.

 

SUSHILARANI PATEL

SUSHILARANI PATEL

 

Baburao Patel was a Member of Parliament. But primarily he was a film critic and editor of a very popular film magazine called ” Filmindia “. Sushilarani Patel was married to him. She was his third wife. ” Filmindia “ was dreaded by the film industry folks of bygone era. It is infamous for its acerbic editorials. Just go through the views of Baburao Patel published in the magazine  ” Filmindia “ about ” Jwar Bhata ” [ 1944 ] , the debut film of Dilip Kumar :

Dilip Kumar, the new hero of Bombay Talkies is an anaemic addition to our film artistes. He needs lots of vitamins and a prolonged treatment of proteins before another picture can be risked with him. He looks gaunt and famished and strikes as a long ill-treated convict, who has escaped from a jail. His appearance on the screen creates both laughter and disappointment. His acting efforts in this picture amounts to nill. “

Can it be considered a critical analysis of a debut making young actor’s acting calibre? Do you think it is decent, sensible and appropriate to comment on looks and physicality of an artiste? But Baburao Patel was known for his scathing, acerbic and derogatory personal comments. And Sushilarani Patel was his wife, third wife. It is alleged that he was jealous of her. It is also rumoured that Baburao Patel was very possessive of extremely beautiful and young Sushilarani. So, it was natural that she starred and sang just in two films and then faded into oblivion. And the two films were directed by Baburao Patel himself. The two films in question were ” Draupadi ” [ 1944 ] and Gwalan ” [ 1946 ]. These films tanked at the box office without any trace and Sushilarani’s career got an untimely and abrupt end.

 

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Draupadi

 

SUSHILARANI as DRAUPADI in Vastra Haran Scene of DRAUPADI

SUSHILARANI as DRAUPADI in Vastra Haran Scene of DRAUPADI

 

Any print of the film or any link of the songs she sang in ” Draupadi ” [ 1944 ] is not available today. I copied the above picture of Sushilarani in ” Draupadi ” [ 1944 ]  from the internet and posted it above.

” Gwalan ” [ 1946 ] , second film of Sushilarani Patel was also produced and directed by Baburao Patel. And Sushilarani Patel sang a duet in this film with legendary play back singer Mukesh. The song in question was tuned by Hansraj Bahl and lyrics were written by Indra Chandra. For lovers of old Hindi film songs ” …………………….. LAGAT NAZAR TORI CHHALAIYA ……………………. ” is a gem. Fortunately the song is available on YouTube. I am providing YouTube link of the song :

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vgcrVFUZLXE

Just two films ; ” Draupadi ” [ 1944 ] and ” Gwalan ” [ 1946 ] and that is all. That heralded the end. A sad end of a talented singer-actor. A talented artiste’s talent was allegedly crushed under the ego, obsessiveness, jealousy and whims of her husband. Sushilarani’s nephew and some of her students have confirmed these allegations in their interviews.

I think now you have all the answers of the questions , which I put forward in the beginning.

Baburao Patel died in 1982. And Sushilarani Patel could properly start her career only after her husband’s death. But at that time she was 62. Her prime was gone. Her other peer Kishori Amonkar became a legend in her own life time. They both started learning classical music from legendary Moghubai Kurdikar. Incidentally Moghubai was the mother of  Kishori Amonkar.

My student Alvira Khan, who is Salman Khan’s sister, was a student of Sushilarani Patel. So I know Sushilarani in a way. I empathized with her and after her demise, I am saddened.

 

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On behalf of all the students and staff of VIDUR Acting Institute , VIDUR Editing Studio , VIDUR Club and VIDUR Merchandise, I offer my condolences.


[ Information about Sushilarani Patel and Baburao Patel is taken from several newspapers, YouTube and also from Wikipedia. I express my gratitude. ]

 

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Suchitra Sen : Ei Poth Jodi Na Shesh Hoi……


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MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA           FEBRUARY 18, 2014           09.20 P.M.

Mahanayika Suchitra Sen

Mahanayika Suchitra Sen

The year was 1967 or 1968. The city was Allahabad in Uttar Pradesh. And the cinema hall , if my memory is not failing me , was Ajanta Talkies at Zero Road. I , along with few of my friends, went to watch a Dilip Kumar starrer black & white film ” Devdas ” [ 1955 ] . I had read Sharat Chandra written immensely popular novel of the same name during my adolescent age in Deoria. I read it so many times and I was so infatuated, fascinated by the character of Devdas that even after so many decades , I vividly remember each and every thing about the novel and all the details of all the characters. In 1967 – 1968, when I went to watch the film, I could even recite the dialogues and paragraphs from the novel.

I had heard about myriads film avatars of Devdas, which were made in several Indian languages.  Naturally Dilip Kumar starrer and Bimal Roy directed ” Devdas ” [ 1955 ] in Hindi was on the top of my list. It had Dilip Kumar portraying the male protagonist to the perfection. I had read various articles about his portrayal of the character. I also knew that Paro is being played by a Bengali actress called Suchitra Sen .

I entered and took my seat in the Ajanta cinema hall. Film started and Dilip Kumar’s arrival on the screen was greeted with thunderous applause. I got totally engrossed in the histrionics and persona of the thespian, the legendary tragedy king of Hindi cinema, ( the ) Dilip Kumar. I was waiting for Suchitra Sen to appear on the screen. Young Paro was played by baby Naaz. I was waiting with curiosity for Suchitra Sen to appear on the screen. She appeared on the screen …………

………….and behold !!!

I was smitten by her eyes. I was hooked to her beauty. I was enamoured by her personality. I was hypnotized by her voice. I was captivated for life by her screen persona. Apart from Waheeda Rehman, I have never admired any other actress so much.

Suchitra Sen as Paro in Hindi Devdas

Suchitra Sen as Paro in Hindi Devdas

Suchitra Sen as Paro in Hindi Devdas with Dilip Kumar

Suchitra Sen as Paro in Hindi Devdas with Dilip Kumar

Later on I watched Dev Anand and Suchitra Sen starrer ” Bombai Ka Baboo ” [ 1960 ] . Though an ordinary film but the climax of the film refused to fade away from my psyche for days and months. After so many decades , even today, it refuses to get obfuscated. Ah, her serene elegant persona, her haunting tear-filled eyes and the back-ground song in the voice of legendary Mukesh, ” Chal Ri Sajni Ab Kya Soche ; Kajra Na Beh Jayen Rote Rote ………. “ shook me permanently and became an eternal part of my being. Every drop of tear on her cheek is still fresh in my memory.

Vintage Suchitra Sen

Vintage Suchitra Sen

After above mentioned two films , I watched ” Mamta ” [ 1966 ] .1966 – 67 is the important year of my life. I passed high school. I left Deoria and went to Allahabad for higher studies. Slowly I started coming out of my cocoon. I started watching films regularly and started appreciating them also. I started spending hours and hours with my friends discussing films. And one day , I watched ” Mamta ” [ 1966 ] . I was a fan of Ashok Kumar. I was a fan of Suchitra Sen . And she was essaying a double role of mother and daughter in this film. She played it with perfection. It was one year before Dilip Kumar’s highly successful and much acclaimed double role in the film ” Ram Aur Shyam ” [ 1967 ] .

Suchitra Sen in Mamta

Suchitra Sen in Mamta

Needless to say that much later I watched ” Aandhi ” [ 1975 ] also . It is her last Hindi film. She was marvellous as usual. 3 years after the much acclaimed film ” Aandhi ” [ 1975 ] , she retired in 1978 and slowly faded from public life.

Suchitra Sen in Andhi

Suchitra Sen in Andhi

From ” Sharey Chuattor ” [ 1953 ] to ” Pronoy Pasha ” [ 1978 ] , she worked in 60 films in a career spanning 25 years. Out of her total 60 films , her Hindi films are only 7. These films are : ” Devdas ” [ 1955 ] , ” Musafir ” [ 1957 ] , ” Champakali ” [ 1957 ] , ” Bombai Ka Baboo ” [ 1960 ] , ” Sarhad ” [ 1960 ] , ” Mamta ” [ 1966 ] and ” Aandhi ” [ 1975 ] . Of all the 7 Hindi films of her, I have watched 4 films.

Her important and memorable Bengali films are : ” Sharey Chuattor ” [ 1953 ] , ” Sabar Uparey ” [ 1955 ] , ” Mejo Bou ” [ 1955 ] , ” Shilpi ” [ 1956 ] , ” Harano Sur ” [ 1957 ] , ” Pathe Holo Deri ” [ 1957 ] , ” Deep Jwele Jaai ” [ 1959 ] , ” Smriti Tuku Thaak ” [ 1960 ] , ” Saptapadi ” [ 1961 ] , ” Saat Paake Badha ” [ 1963 ] , ” Uttar Phalguni ” [ 1963 ] , ” Grihadaha ” [ 1967 ] , ” Alo Amaar Alo ” [ 1972 ] , ” Haar Maana Haar ” [ 1972 ] , ” Devi Chaudhurani ” [ 1974 ] , ” Datta ” [ 1976 ] and ” Pronoy Pasha ” [ 1978 ].

I have seen many of these films. I will specially mention Uttam Kumar and Suchitra Sen starrer ” Saptapadi ” [ 1961 ] . One number of this film is considered all time great romantic song ever in Bengali films. It is ” Ei poth jodi na shesh hoi …………….. Uttam Kumar on the bike and Suchitra Sen as pillion rider singing the immortal ” ………………. Ei poth jodi na shesh hoi ………………. ” .

"Saptapadi" -Ei Poth Jodi Na Shesh Hoi ......

“Saptapadi” -Ei Poth Jodi Na Shesh Hoi ……

Years later when I came to Bombay [ now Mumbai ] and became acting trainer, one day I got a call from Riya Sen. She wanted to get trained by me. I was ecstatic that I would be training legendary Suchitra Sen’s grand-daughter. I immediately went to her Juhu residence. I worked with her for few months. I met her sister Raima and mother Moon Moon Sen also. But I could not get a chance to meet legendary Suchitra Sen. Though I wanted to meet her desperately. But it was not destined.

She became recluse by each passing year. She came out of her house when Uttam Kumar died on July 24, 1980. After that day no one had seen her ever. It was 34 year-long reclusive life. It was 34 year-long self – imposed exile. But instead of fading from memory, it made her personality more enigmatic. Even after 34 years the aura remained undiminished. She went away from public gaze but never faded from public memory.

Enigmatic Suchitra Sen

Enigmatic Suchitra Sen

Ethereal Suchitra Sen

Ethereal Suchitra Sen

Impish Suchitra Sen

Impish Suchitra Sen

One of her many avatars

One of her many avatars

I used to ask Riya many questions about her grandmother. I wanted to know more and more mortal details about immortal Suchitra Sen. Riya was nonchalant. Initially her nonchalance baffled me, disappointed me. It never occurred to me that for me Suchitra Sen is an idol , an icon but for Riya , she is her grandmother. So her answers never matched my enthusiasm. I think she must have felt awkward by my intrusion.

Alas ! as is the inevitable for every human being, Suchitra Sen left this world for her celestial journey on January 17, 2014 . She died in Kolkata aged 82.

Suchitra Sen : Last Journey

Suchitra Sen : Last Journey

Mortal Remains of Immortal Suchitra Sen

Mortal Remains of Immortal Suchitra Sen

I was saddened beyond words. I am still numb. I was unable to write about her immediately, though I wanted to write desperately. Suchitra Sen is gone and with her departure my world of adolescent years has gone forever. It has crumbled. This void is not going to be filled easily. A world without Suchitra Sen is not the world for me. But ….. nothing could be done. Life will meander to complete its course. Life will slither with saddened soul.

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On behalf of all the students and staff of VIDUR Acting Institute , I express my profound sorrow and grief. Life goes on and it will go on. But without Suchitra Sen, it will not be same again.

VIDUR Editing Studio , VIDUR Club and VIDUR Theatre would also like to offer condolences and express solidarity with Moon Moon Sen, Raima Sen and Riya Sen in this hour of grief.

As they say, they won’t make people like Suchitra Sen any more.

[ List of Suchitra Sen’s films  is taken from Wikipedia. I express gratitude. ]

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Vidur’s Film Diary – October 2013


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MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA           NOVEMBER 07 , 2013           01.45 P.M.
Month of October 2013 will always be infamously known and remembered for ” Besharam “ , a Ranbir Kapoor film , which is the biggest ever Hindi film release till date with over 3000 prints . It is also Ranbir Kapoor’s biggest flop till date . It is said to be the desi version of Lock , Stock And Two Smoking Barrels ” .
” Boss “ , a Akshay Kumar film , also bombed at the box office . Towards the end of the month , 05 films got released but they all failed to make mark in any way .
It is sad and unfortunate that 5 luminaries of Hindi film world left us for their heavenly abode this month . It made this month more gloomy and melancholic .

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Obituary :

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Raj Tilak  : 

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Popular filmmaker of the 70s and 80s, and son-in-law of legendary B. R. Chopra , Raj Tilak passed away on October 06 , 2013 after suffering from septicaemia . He was 73 years old at the time of his death .

He made some highly popular films like ;  ” 36 Ghante ” [ 1974 ] , ” Mukti ” [ 1977 ] ,  ” Tumhare Liye ” [ 1978 ] and ” Chehre Pe Chehra ” [ 1981 ] .

His film ” 36 Ghante ” [ 1974 ] was based on William Wyler’s cult Hollywood film  ” The Desperate Hours ” [ 1955 ] . And ” Chehre Pe Chehra ” [ 1981 ]  was an Indian version of the famous novella of Robert Louis Stevenson ” Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde ”  .

Raj has directed bigwigs like Shashi Kapoor, Sanjeev Kumar, Rekha and Parveen Babi. He has been an active member of the Producers Guild too.

Krishna Shah :

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India’s first true export to Hollywood and a producer – director of repute , Krishna Shah died on October 13 , 2013 in Los Angeles , U.S.A. at the age of 75 .

He produced and directed many successful films in Hollywood . His first Indian film was Dharmendra & Zeenat Aman starrer ” Shalimar ” [ 1978 ] . Incidentally it was also the debut film of Rex Harrison in Hindi . He later made a documentary on Indian cinema . It is called ” Cinema Cinema ” [ 1979 ] .

Posting link of the blog , which I wrote about him :

Adieu Krishna Shah http://wp.me/ptyXI-3b5

Randhawa :

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Younger brother of Dara Singh and a wrestler of repute , Randhawa died on 21 October 2013 in Mumbai .

He worked in many films along with his brother and also had few solo starrers . His better known films are ” Faulad ” [ 1963 ] , ” Aadmi Aur Insaan ” [ 1969 ] , ” Henna ” [ 1991 ] and ” Duplicate ” [ 1998 ] .

He married Mallika , younger sister of Mumtaz and his son Shaad Randhawa made his debut in Mahesh Bhat’s  ” Woh Lamhe ” [ 2006 ] .

Manna Dey :

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After the sad demise of Mohammad Rafi , Mukesh , Kishore Kumar , Hemant Kumar and Talat Mehmood , the last of the titans in the field of Hindi playback singing , Manna Dey died on October 24 , 2013 in Bengaluru at the age of 94 .

Who can forget his immortal melodies like ; ” Ae Mere Pyare Watan ……… ” , ” Pyaar Hua Iqraar Hua ……………… ” , ” Aa Ja Sanam Madhur Chandani Men Ham ………………. ” , ” Ae Meri Zohra Jabeen ……………….. ” , ” Qasme Waade Pyaar Wafa……………… ” ” Ik Chatur Naar Karke Singar ……………………….. ” ” Yaari Hai Eemaan Meraa ……………………. ” and ” Ye Dosti Ham Nahin Chhodenge …………………………. ” ?

Posting the link of the blog , which I wrote about him as tribute :

Remembering Manna Dey : Tu Pyaar Kaa Saagar Hai http://wp.me/ptyXI-3b7

K. P. Saxena :

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Noted Hindi writer and a satirist of repute , K. P. Saxena died on October 31 , 2013 in Lucknow , Uttar Pradesh due to cardiac arrest . He was 81 at the time of his death .

A Padma Shri awardee , he wrote dialogues for couple of Hindi films . Notable among them are ; ” Lagaan ” [ 2001 ] , ” Swades ” [ 2004 ] , ” Hulchul ” [ 2004 ] and ” Jodha Akbar ” [ 2008 ] . He was also nominated for Filmfare Award for Best Dialogue Writer for ” Jodha Akbar ” [ 2008 ] .

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New Hindi Film Releases & Me :

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First Week – October  04 ( 02 )

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1 – Besharam …………………………………………………………… Ranbir Kapoor

Second Week – October  11

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1 – Baat Bann Gayi ……………………………………………………. X

2 – War Chhod Na Yaar ……………………………………………. Soha Ali Khan

Third Week – October  18 ( 16 )

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1 – Boss ………………………………………………………………….. Harry Josh

2 – Shahid ………………………………………………………………. Vaibhav Vishant

Fourth Week  – October  25

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1 – Dilli Gang …………………………………………………………… Vikas Bhalla

2 – Micky Virus ……………………………………………………….. X

3 – Sooper Se Ooper …………………………………………………. X

4 – Wake Up India ……………………………………………………. Chirag Patil

5 – Ishk Actually ………………………………………………………. Rayo Bakhirta

 

In total …………… 10 …………….. films got released in October . Out of these ………….. 10 ………… released films ……….. 07 ………… films have …………… 07 ……………. artistes , who are trained by me .



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New Regional Films & Me :

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1 – Bengali : Priyanshu Chatterjee is doing a role in  ” Swabhoomi “.

2 – Bengali : Ashmit Patel is doing a role in ” Swabhoomi ” .


My ………….. 02 ………………. students in ……….. 01 ………….. regional film .

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TV Trivia & Me :

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1 – Rohit Khurana is playing an important role in  ” Sasural Simar Ka ” on Colors TV .

2 – Adhir Bhatt is playing an important role in ” 24 “ on Colors TV .

3 – Tara Sharma is anchoring a new season of ” The Tara Sharma Show – Diaries Of A New Mum “ on NDTV Good Times .


My ……………. 03 ……….. students in ………… 03 ……………. shows on TV .

 

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Commercials & Me :

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1 – Kareena Kapoor is the  Brand Ambassador of ” Colgate  ” .

2 – Katrina Kaif is the Brand Ambassador of ” Titan Raga Pearls ” .

3 – Katrina Kaif is the Brand Ambassador of ” Sony Experia ” .

4 – Saif Ali Khan is the Brand Ambassador of ” Siyaram Suiting ” .

5 – Priyanka Chopra is the Brand Ambassador of ” Nikon ” .


My ………….. 04 …………… students in …………… 05 …………… commercial campaigns .

As an acting trainer / acting tutor I had an average month . Not very satisfying indeed . My 07 students appeared in 07 films , 03 students in 03 TV shows , 02 students in 01 regional film , 03 students in 03 plays and 04 students appeared in 05 Ads also . Thus total number of students working in the month of October comes to 19 .

Insignia of Brand VIDUR

Insignia of Brand VIDUR

On behalf of all the students and staff of VIDUR Acting Institute , which is known as Vidur’s Kreating Charakters  , I congratulate all my above mentioned students .

VIDUR Editing Studio , VIDUR Club and VIDUR Theatre would also like to wish them well in their glorious journey ahead .

May they shine in their chosen field .

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Remembering Manna Dey : Tu Pyaar Kaa Saagar Hai


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MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA           NOVEMBER 06 , 2013           08.25 P.M.

Manna Dey

Manna Dey (Photo credit: ramesh_lalwani)

Prabodh Chandra Dey a.k.a. Manna Dey

1 May 1919  −  24 October 2013

The news of Manna Dey’s death was almost a certainty and was expected . Advancing age and failing health had prepared us for such an eventuality . Still when I read about his demise , a pall of gloom engulfed me . He died on October 24 , 2013 in Bengaluru at the age of 94 .

Manna Dey , along with Mohammad Rafi , Mukesh , Kishore Kumar , Talat Mehmood and Hemant Kumar , was the most important play back singer of the golden era of Hindi films and a force to reckon with in singing world . With his demise , the last remnant of the golden era of Hindi film music and a gigantic figure among the male play back singers of Hindi film world is gone forever .

Before proceeding further , I must admit my blasphemy that initially I used to dislike his singing . Today as I can understand the nuances of music , I am ashamed of my blasphemy and I am extremely sorry that during my adolescent years , I was unable to appreciate his mastery of the art and craft . The first song of Manna Dey , which I liked and appreciated was the iconic ” Qasme Waade Pyaar Wafa , Sab Baaten Hain Baaton Kaa Kyaa ………………………………………. ” , the song from Manoj Kumar’s ” Upkar ” [ 1967 ] . I was speechless and stunned while listening the song and watching Pran Saheb on screen . It is uncanny that Pran Saheb and his screen voice in many films , Manna Da , both died in 2013 . Pran Saheb left us on July 12 , 2013 and just 3 months 12 days later , his voice on-screen , Manna Da also left us on October 24 , 2013 .

Later on when I started watching old Hindi films in Allahabad in Sunday morning shows , I watched ” Shri 420 ” [ 1955 ] , I was hooked to his voice . ” Pyaar Hua Iqraar Hua , Phir Pyaar Se Ab Kyon Darta Hai Dil …………………………… ” , ” Dil Ka Haal Sune Dilwaalaa …………………………… ” , ” Mud Mud Ke Na Dekh ………………………. ” and the evergreen ” Ramaiya Vastavaiya ……………… “ are difficult to forget .

After watching ” Chori Chori ” [ 1956 ] , I was mesmerized by his voice . His duets with Lata Mangeshkar are immortal and they are pure gems . ” Aajaa Sanam , Madhur Chandni Men Ham ……………………………….. ” and ” Ye Raat Bheegi Bheegi , Ye Mast Fizayen …………………………………… “ refuse to fade away from my memory even after 57 years .

Who can forget his other immortal melodies like ; ” Ae Mere Pyare Watan …………… ” , ” Ik Chatur Naar Karke Singar ………………………………. ” , ” Poochho Na Kaise Maine Rain Bitayee ………………………………………. ” , ” Aao Twist Karen ………………………………………………. ” , ” Yaari Hai Eemaan Meraa …………………………………….. ” and ” Ye Dosti Ham Nahin Chhodenge ……………………………………. ” ?

Known by his stage name Manna Dey , he debuted in the film ” Tamanna ” [ 1942 ] , and continued to sing till ” Umar ” [ 2006 ] . He went on to record more than 4000 songs during 1942 – 2013 . He , though sang for other heroes occasionally , was the voice of Raj Kapoor , Uttam Kumar , Mehmood and Pran .

Since 1992, Manna Dey withdrew himself from Hindi film music. But he continued to sing in Bengali movies, bhajans and ghazals in different languages and appeared in live performances during 1992 to 2012 . His last live performance was in 2012 in Mumbai. His last recorded song in Hindi films was for the film Umar in 2006 composed by Shamir Tandon, Duniyawaalo Kee Nahee Kuchh Bhee Khabar, which he sang along with Kavita Krishnamoorthy and Sonu Nigam.

He sang duets with singers like Mukesh, Sandhya Mukherjee, Mahendra Kapoor, Talat Mahmood, Amit Kumar, Shailendra Singh, Krishna Kalle, Shardha Rajan Iyengar, Arati Mukherjee, Chandrani Mukherjee, Anuradha Pudwal, Hemlata, Minu Purushottom, Bhupinder Singh, K.J. Yesudas, Suresh Wadkar, Kavita Krishnamoorty, Alka Yagnik, Antara Chowdhury, Preeti Sagar, Dilraj Kaur, Yunus Fazmi, Jaspal Singh, Anwar, Manhar Udhas, Joginder and Mubarak Begum.

He worked with more than 102 music directors in Hindi film industry from working with Krishna Chandra Dey in ” Tamanna ” [ 1942 ] to music composer Shamir Tandon in ” Umar ” [ 2006 ] . Thus it was an unprecedented 64 years – long – singing – career .

The Government of India honoured him with the Padma Shri in 1971, the Padma Bhushan in 2005 and the Dadasaheb Phalke Award in 2007 . He was presented the Filmfare Life Time Achievement Award in 2011.

Manna Da sang mainly in Hindi and Bengali; he also recorded songs in several other Indian languages .

Music career in other languages

  • He sang around 1262 songs in Bengali : 611 songs in Bengali films and 356 Bengali non-film songs . He also sang 46 Rabindra Sangeet Songs in Bengali , 3 Dwigendra Geet , 84 Shyama Sangeet , 23 songs in Akashvani , 3 title songs for Bengali TV serials , 103 Bengali songs from non-released Bengali films and 33 Bengali songs of other varieties .
  • He sang 35 film songs in Bhojpuri , 2 songs in Magadh and one song in Maithili language .
  • He sang 13 Punjabi film songs and 5 non-film songs .
  • He sang 2 songs in Assamese films and 4 non-film songs in Assamese language .
  • He sang 7 songs in Oriya language and 1 song each in Konkani film and Sindhi film .
  • He sang 85 songs in Gujrathi films.
  • He sang 55 Marathi songs in Marathi films and 15 non-film songs in Marathi .He was good at Marathi natya sangeet too, which is one of the most difficult genres to sing
  • He sang 5 film songs in Kannada .
  • He sang in the Nepali movie ” Maitighar “
  • He sang 2 in Malayalam – “Maanasamaine Varoo” from 1965 film Chemmeen and song “Chemba Chemba” from 1974 film Nellu sung with P Jayachandran both composed by Salil Chowdhary and lyrics by Vayalar.

Insignia of Brand VIDUR

On behalf of all the students and staff of VIDUR Acting Institute , which is known as Vidur’s Kreating Charakters  , I offer my condolences to his family . My heart goes to his daughters and other near and dear ones .

VIDUR Editing Studio , VIDUR Club and VIDUR Theatre would also like to offer tribute . It is clichéd to say but there will never be another Manna Dey . He bestrode the Hindi film music world like a colossus but unfortunately never got his due .

May his soul rest in peace !

[ Some of the information and the long list of his songs are being quoted from Wikipedia . I express my debt and gratitude . ]

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Dulari Ji Is Gone; Unwept, Unheard , Unsung !


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MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA           MAY 09 , 2013           06.45 P.M.
Dulari In Her Twilight Years

Dulari In Her Twilight Years

On Monday morning I was shocked to read the news of death of Dulari , a veteran yesteryear Hindi film actor . It is so heart-wrenching that she died in January 2013 and the news came in May 2013 , in Monday’s Times of India . If a popular actor dies and the news comes out a full four months later , it shows the callousness of our film industry . How come no one tried to contact her ? How come no one ever called her to say hi ? How come no one inquired about her health and well-being ? I must admit , our film industry is full of cussed , cruel and selfish people .
Today as I am writing this blog , I suddenly remember these lines , which was filmed on her in ” Devdas ” , a Bimal Roy classic .
साजन की हो गयी गोरी ………
अब घर  का आँगन बिदेस लागे  रे  , नैहर का जीवन कलेस लागे  रे …..

साजन की हो गयी गोरी ………

She left this ephemeral , painful world for her eternal journey . She joined her lover , the God , and became one with him .

A Young Dulari

A Young Dulari

Hindi cinema had many famous and powerful mother figures . Durga Khote , Lalita Pawar , Leela Chitnis , Kamini Kaushal , Achala Sachdev and Sulochna are some of the most famous mothers of Hindi cinema . In recent history Nirupa Roy became an ultimate mother figure . Dulari, though not as famous as her other illustrious peers , was also a popular mother figure of Hindi films .

Dulari - The Poorman's Mother

Dulari – The Poorman’s Mother

She started as a heroine in a couple of films . Immortal hits like  ” Aana Meri Jaan Meri Jaan , Sunday Ke Sunday ”  and ” Jawaani Ki Rail Chali Jaaye Re “ , both from ” Shehnai ” [ 1947 ] were filmed on her .

Dulari

I first noticed her in Bimal Roy’s ” Devdas “ [ 1955 ] . Two songs , written by Sahir Ludhianvi and tuned by Sachin Dev Burman , were filmed on her . ” Aan Milo Aan Milo Shyam Sanware ” and ” Sajan Ki Ho Gayi Gori “ are connoisseurs delight even today .  She played a Vaishnavi Saint with Nana Palsikar as her screen companion . A young Paro , played by Baby Naaz , was sitting on a branch of a mango tree and was remembering Devdas , while Nana Palsikar sang the song and danced . Dulari was just sitting calmly and singing the female version sung by Geeta Dutt . Her calm and serene face remained in my memory . In the same film , years later , when Paro grew older [ played by etherial Suchitra Sen ] , she was again sitting and remembering Devdas . Again same Vaishnav saints came and started singing . Now the song was ” Sajan Ki Ho Gayi Gori ” . I am unable to forget these scenes , these two songs , melancholic face of Paro , played by Baby Naaz and Suchitra Sen respectively and of course Nana Palsikar and Dulari .

Then , years later I watched ” Padosan ” [ 1968 ] and ” Gopi ” [ 1973 ] . In both the films she played the maternal aunt of lead actors ; Sunil Dutt and Dilip Kumar . Memory of her earlier starrers ” Shehnai ” [ 1947 ] , and ” Devdas ” [ 1955 ] once again became fresh in my mind . It is not that I have seen only above mentioned 4 films . I have seen innumerable films of her . But these 4 remain in my memory .

Dulari as Mother Figure

Dulari as Mother Figure

A Kanyakubj Brahman from the Awadh region of Uttar Pradesh , she was born and brought up in Maharashtra . She spent her childhood in Nagpur , where she was born on 18th April 1928. Her name was Ambika but she was nick-named Rajdulari and later on only Dulari remained and the world knew her as Dulari .

Dulari ji’s first film was ‘Bombay Talkies’s’ famous movie ” Jhoola ”  [ 1941 ] with Ashok Kumar . Later on she played Jairaj’s younger sister in a Bombay Talkies film Hamari Baat’ . She was also seen as the second lead in  ‘Amar Pictures’ film ‘Adaab Arz’ where her leading man was the famous singer Mukesh . Both the films were made in 1944 .
shayar

Later on she played small roles in films like ” Ghar ” [ 1945 ] , ” Kulkalank ”  [ 1945 ] , ‘Ahinsa’, ‘Black Market’, ‘Namak’, ‘Pati Sewa’, ‘Rangeen Kahani’ [ all 1947 ] . But Dulari got her real due with ‘Filmistan’s super hit film ” Shehnai ” [ 1947 ] . She played Rehana’s elder sister in the movie and her leading man was Mehmood’s father Mumtaz Ali . As I mentioned earlier two immortal songs were picturized on her in this film . ” Aana Meri Jaan Meri Jaan , Sunday Ke Sunday ”  and ” Jawaani Ki Rail Chali Jaaye Re “ .

After ” Shehnai “ she did films like ” Gunsundari ” , ” Mitti Ke Khilone ” , ” Naav’ ” [ all 1948 ] , ” Nanad Bhaujai ” , ” Shayar ”  [ both 1949 ] , ” Apni Chhaya ” , ” Man Ka Meet ”  [ both 1950 ] , ” Albela ”  [ 1951 ], ” Anjaam ” , ” Bhoole Bhatke ” and ” Veer Arjun ”  [ all 1952 ] .
Paapi
Dulari was seen in an important role in the movie ” Paapi ” [ 1953 ] . In this Ranjeet Movietone film Raj Kapoor played his career’s only double role. Nargis and Dulari played his two heroines .  After it she worked in Jeewan Jyoti ” [ 1953 ] , ” Devdas ”  [ 1955 ] , ” Zindagi Ke Mele ”  [ 1956 ] , ” Ek Gaon Ki Kahani ” , ” Johny Walker ” ,  ” Paying Guest ”  [ all 1957 ] ,  ” Kavi Kalidas ”  and ” Santaan ” [ 1959 ] .
Devdas (1955 film)

Devdas (1955 film) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

JPKSHH

images

Padosan

After 1959 , after two years hiatus , she started her second innings from 1961 and for the next 35 years, Dulari played many big and small roles in almost 135 films like ‘Jab Pyar Kisi Se Hota Hai’, ‘Mujhe Jeene Do’, ‘Apne Hue Paraye’, ‘Aap Aaye bahaar Aai’, ‘Aaye Din Bahaar Ke’, Anupama’, ‘Teesri Kasam’, ‘Padosan’, ‘Aradhna’, ‘Aaya Sawan Jhoom Ke’, ‘Chiraagh’, ‘Inteqaam’, ‘Aan Milo Sajna’, ‘Heer Ranjha’, ‘Johny Mera Naam’, ‘Caravan’, ‘Laal Patthar’, ‘Beimaan’, ‘Seeta Aur Geeta’, ‘Raja Rani’, ‘Ameer Gareeb’, ‘Haath Ki Safai’, ‘Deewar’, ‘Do Jasoos’, ‘Aahuti’, ‘Ganga Ki Saugandh’, ‘Biwi O Biwi’, ‘Naseeb’, ‘Prem Rog’, ‘Agar Tum Na Hote and ‘Dharmadhikari’. And then one day she quietly retired from the world of movies.

Later on she did only two films . ” Surya ” [ 1989 ] and ” Ziddi ” [ 1997 ] . Ziddi directed by Guddu Dhanoa is her last film . Thus from ” Jhoola ”  [ 1941 ] to ” Ziddi ” [ 1997 ] , her career span was 56 years .

After a career spanning 56 years and after 171 hindi, 35 Gujarati, 3 Marathi and 1 Rajasthani film , she left Mumbai and went to live with her daughter in Indore . She also acted in a ‘Shri Adhikari Brothers’ serial called ‘Waqt Ki Raftaar’ .

During her final years Dulari ji was suffering from Alzheimer and was admitted to ICU in a hospital in PUNE in the last week of December ’12 where at the age of 85 she breathed her last on 18th January 2013 around 10 a.m. She was cremated on 19th January 2013 in the noon in Pune.

…………………………………………………………………………………
Few links of songs filmed on Dulari :
1 – aana meri jaan sunday ke sunday /shehnai/1947
2 – jawani ki rail chali jaaye/shehnai/1947
3 – aan milo aan milo shyam sanware/devdas/1955
4 – sajan ki ho gai gori/devdas/1955
5 – madhav bin saara brij soona/sautela bhai/1962
 …………………………………………………………………………………

I offer my condolences on behalf myself and on behalf of all the students and staff of VIDUR Acting Institute , which is known as Vidur’s Kreating Charakters . May God give eternal peace to Dulari Ji and strength to her daughter and other near and dear ones to bear this loss .

I can visualize a frail ,  85-year-old , lonely lady suffering from Alzheimer , sitting without a friend or companion in an old age home with blank eyes and waiting for some elusive loving one . Long windy nights of winter , dull and dusty days of summer and wet , pouring and dreary evenings of  rainy season must have come and gone  without any trace of succour . It is painful , very painful . Finally , only death could relieve her from her pain .

साजन की हो गयी गोरी ………
अब घर  का आँगन बिदेस लागे  रे  , नैहर का जीवन कलेस लागे  रे …..

साजन की हो गयी गोरी ………

Rest in peace Dulari ji ! A tearful farewell from an ardent fan . I am happy that you left this cruel , selfish , cussed world . May , in next life , you get everything that you have ever desired for you .

[ While writing this blog , I have taken few facts and materials from the article ” Aan Milo Aan Milo Shyam Sanware’-Dulari ” , written by Shri Shishir Krishna Sharma for his ‘Sahara Samay’ column ‘kya bhooloon kya yaad karoon’ . I am indebted . ]

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MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA

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New Female Playback Singers of Hindi Films


MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA           NOVEMBER 10 , 2012           00.35 A.M.

When ” Alam Ara ” , the first Indian talkie , hit the screen in 1931 , an era started , which could easily be called the era of singing stars . All the actors sang their own songs on the screen . Well known female stars of that era were no exception . From Devika Rani to Leela Chitnis and from Kanan Devi to lesser known starlets, every heroine worth the name sang their own songs .

English: Alam Ara poster, 1931.

Alam Ara poster, 1931. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Scene from the 1936 film Achhut Kanya

Ashok Kumar & Devika Rani in a Scene from the 1936 film Achhut Kanya (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Kanan Devi

Kanan Devi (Photo credit: tonymitra)

Then came the era of Noor Jahan and Suraiya . Both were immensely popular stars and huge singers of their generation . Their songs and their films are still popular . Their retirement from the films finally brought an end to the glorious era of singing stars . Salma Agha , another singing star , came in ” Nikah ” [ 1982 ]  but it was an exception . Singing stars era had ended much earlier .

After the end of singing stars era , playback singing in films became popular . Rajkumari Dubey could be called the first female playback singer . She started her singing career in 1940 . Her songs with Mukesh in ” Bawre Nain “[ 1950 ]  are still famous and they are memorable . Modern day movie goer are familiar with her song from ” Pakeeza “[ 1972 ]  . It is ….. najaria ki mari mari more saiyan …….

Another playback singer from that era was Shamshad Begum . She rose to prominence with ” Khazanchi ” [ 1941 ] and ” Khandaan ” [ 1942 ] . Her career suffered major set back with the advent and subsequent supremacy of Lata Mangeshkar andAsha Bhosle . Amirbai Karnataki was another famous playback singer from that era .

Then began an era which is known as Lata Mangeshkar Era . She , along with her younger sibling Asha Bhosle , dominated the playback scene of Hindi films like a colossus for almost 5 decades .

English: Indian singer Lata Mangeshkar

Lata Mangeshkar (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Indian singer Asha Bhosle

Asha Bhosle (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

During their era many singers came and went into oblivion . Geeta Dutt , Suman Kalyanpur , Kamal Barot ,  Sudha Malhotra , Mubarak Begum and Sharda came and eclipsed quickly without leaving a mark .

In 70s , while Lata Mangeshkar was still reigning supreme , again a new crop of female playback singers emerged . Alka Yagnik , Sadhana Sargam , Kavita Krishnamurty andAnuradha Paudwal came , gave some memorable hits and faded into oblivion . Lata Mangeshkar still ruled and gave memorable hits like ; Yash Chopra directed  ” Veer – Zaara ” [ 2004 ] .

Now a new crop of playback singers are hovering on the horizon . Shreya Ghoshal has become numero Uno like Lata Mangeshkar and Sunidhi Chauhan has almost taken Asha Bhosle’s place . But there are other female playback singers  also . They are fast emerging on the scene .

ADITI SINGH SHARMA : With chart – busters like ; ” Aali Re …. ” & ” Dilli , Dilli …… ” in ” No One Killed Jessica “ and ” Chhoomantar ….. ” in Mere Brother Ki Dulhan , she became a singer to watch in future .

ALYSSA MENDONSA : Daughter of Loy Mendonsa of Shankar – Ahsan – Loy fame , she sang ” Uff Teri Ada ……. ” in ” Karthik Calling Karthik “ and immensely popular ” Khwabon Ke Parindey ….. ” in Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara .

ANUSHKA MANCHANDA : She sang re-mix version of ” Dum Maro Dum …… ” with a rare conviction and forced everyone to take notice of her talent .

HARSHDEEP KAUR : With ” Katiya Karoon ….. ” of  ” Rockstar “ and ” Jugni ………….. ” of ” Cocktail “ , she hit big and is surely on her way to the top .

MAHALAXMI IYER : She hit the bull’s-eye with ” Ae Ajnabee ……….. ” in ” Dil Se ” , ” Sadka Kiya ………… ” in ” I Hate Luv Storys “ and hugely popular Punjabi numbers like ; ” Laung Da Lashkara ……. ” & ” Rola Pe Gaya …….. ” in ” Patiala House ” .

NEHA BHASIN : ” Kuchh Khas Hai …….. ” in ” Fashion “ and ” Dhunki Dhunki ……. ” in ” Mere Brother Ki Dulhan “ brought her on the top .

SHIPLA RAO : In a hit number like : ” Khuda Jane …………… ” of ” Bachna Ae Haseenon “ , she found her moorings .

SHRUTI PATHAK : With ” Marjaawan …………… ” in ” Fashion “ and ” Payaliya ………… ” in ” Dev D “ , she arrived and made her presence felt .

SHWETA PANDIT : She made her debut in Yash Raj Films ” Mohabbatein ” [ 2000 ] . From ” Mohabbatein “ to ” Mere Brother Ki Dulhan ” [ 2011 ]  , she had sung several hits in Hindi . She regularly performs with A. R. Rehman‘s stage shows also . She is extremely popular singer in Telugu films also .

With Shweta Pandit in My Office

With Shweta Pandit in My Office

In a way she is my student . Though she never took admission in my Acting Institute and didn’t come to my regular batch . But still she come to my institute whenever she is free and participates in the improvisation classes of my institute Vidur’s Kreating Charakters .

I am happy for her and wish her greater success . I am sure in years to come she will be top playback singer of India .

I am happy that I have at least one student in playback singing field also .

VIDUR

MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA

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