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Aayye Mehrbaan Casts A Spell

Ranjani Saigal
01/05/2011

O.P.Nayyar's No.1 fan,  Siraj Khan organized a spellbinding musical evening featuring the music of the maestro. The event titled Aayye Meherban was a fundraiser to support Nayyar's favorite cause -  to provide a decent livelihood to the families of retired musicians. It was held at the home of Jawed Wahid on Dec 18 , 2010.

In this inimitable style, Siraj Khan welcomed the audience. "I am wearing the Kurta which once belonged to Nayyar Saab.  I can feel his spirit here with us" said Khan as he spoke about his very emotional ties to Nayyar Saab. Siraj Khan  served as the MCEE for evening and added great anecdotes from the life of Nayyar Saab as it related to each song that was sung , thus giving a glimpse into the mind of this great man.

The evening featured seasoned singers Sudha Rao, Raghu Saranathan, Salman Dar, Sowmya Suryanarayanan along with young artists Anusha Kulkarni, Ami Shalabh and Selina Bannerjee  who held the audience spellbound with all time favorite Nayyar hits.

The evening opened with Sudha Rao singing  Nayyar's first major hit,  Hoon Abhi Mein from Aar Paar . Raghu followed with Anchal mein saja le na kaliyan from Phir Wahi Dil Laya heon. An absolutely phenomenal duet followed with Raghu and Sudha singing Diwana Hua Badal.
Salman Dar always brings not just music but also his wonderful histrionic talent and that made  the next number "Jawaniyan ye must must" a hit.  

The next item was a very special treat from a young Anusha Kulkarni whose rendition of Kabhi Aar Kabhi Par originally sung by Shamshad Begum was brilliant. Rohan Pusalkar a young man from Mumbai also got to know Nayyar Saab during his later years and has devoted his life also to keeping the music and work of Nayyar Saab alive had this to say about the rendition "It is amazing to see a young girl no more that 12 is singing a song that was sung by a musicians  who is many decades her senior.  This is a tribute to both young Anusha and Shamshad Begum. A little known fact is that the most remixes of old songs that you see today were originally sung by Shamshad Begum. So timeless is her work" said Pusalkar.


 Anusha and Sowmya then presented Jhuki Jhuki Pyar Ki Nazar. Sowmya's matured rendition with Anusha's sweet young voice made for a real treat. Then came yet another young star , Selina Bannerjee who delivered a fine rendition of Balma Khuli hawa mien. It turns out that this youngster is the great granddaughter of the music maestro Pankaj Mallik. She seems to a great "waris" to her  musical heritage. The evening continued with many wonderful musical numbers and a delightful dance by young Ami Shalabh. The evening ended in the tradition of these evenings with everyone singing Pritam Aan Milo.


The electric audience included people from all parts of the Indian Subcontinent. We had Pakistanis, Bangladeshis , North Indians and South Indians. All felt  completely bonded by their love for this maestros music.  The music went beyond the words and touched the hearts deeply. The fact that youngsters were also feeling the power of Nayyar's music is a true testament to the timeless nature of his work.

For Siraj Khan  it was an evening filled with emotions as he reminisced about his hero. For the audience the evening was a simple delight. The perfect sound engineering provided by Jawed Wahid and the karaoke tracks provided by Chandru made for a perfect delivery of fine music.

"We look forward to  the next event where we shall feature hits of Geeta Dutt" . New England awaits that event with bated breath!



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1.Good show, but ... January 19, 2011Vipul Kumar Nandy 

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