Also a fundraiser for Parkinson’s New Zealand
Venkat Raman –
More than ten years after the death of Laxmikant of the Laxmikant Pyarelal fame, the other half has perhaps still not reconciled to the harsh reality.
Pyarelal Ramprasad Sharma is now 76 years old but carries memories that are as young as he was when he started out performing when he was ten years old.
“It was obvious that one of us would have to go first. Frankly speaking, even today, I feel that Laxmi is still there,” he said during an interview barely six months after his co-music director left this world.
Some of their lilting songs can be heard at ‘Suneheri Yaadein’ (Golden Memories), a programme scheduled to be held on Saturday, May 20, 2017 at Dorothy Winstone Centre, Auckland Girls Grammar School at 630 pm.
Orqanised by ‘Swar Sadhana Academy of Music’ in association with Ravi Shetty, ‘Suneheri Yaadein’ will feature Arun Khotkar, Ashish Ramkrishnan, Ekta Kumar, Guncha Singh, Joseph Jose, Kanik Mongia, Kanika Diesh, Kavita Lamba, Neel Patel, Ravi Shetty, Ritika Badakere, Sandhya Badakere, Siddhi Nigudkar, Srishaa Iyer and Vibha Trivedi.
Tickets, priced at $20 are available at Yogiji Food Mart and Auckland Indian Sweets. Further details can be obtained on (09) 6270009.
The Departed Soul
Laxmikant Shantaram Kudalkar, was born on the day of Laxmi Puja, on 3 November 1937. Probably, because of the day of his birth, his parents named him as Laxmikant, after the goddess Laxmi. He spent his childhood amidst dire poverty in the slums of Vile Parle (East) in Mumbai. His father died when he was a child. Because of the poor financial condition of the family he could not complete his academic education either. Laxmikant’s father’s friend, a musician himself, advised Laxmikant and his elder brother to learn music.
He began his film career as a child actor in ‘Bhakt Pundalik’ (1949) and ‘Aankhen’ (1950) and acted in a few Gujarati films.
The living legend
Pyarelal Ramprasad Sharma (born 3 September 1940) was the son of a renowned trumpeter Pandit Ramprasad Sharma (popularly known as Babaji), who taught him the basics of music. He learnt to play violin from a Goan musician named Anthony Gonsalves. The song ‘My Name Is Anthony Gonsalves’ from ‘Amar Akbar Anthony’ is regarded as a tribute to Mr Gonsalves.
Laxmikant and Pyarelal met at Sureel Kala Kendra, a music academy for children, run by the Mangeshkar family.
Lata Mangeshkar recommended their names to music directors Naushad, Sachin Dev Burman and C Ramchandra. Similar financial backgrounds and age made Laxmikant and Pyarelal very good friends. They used to spend long hours at the recording studios, sometimes getting work for each other and even playing together whenever they got the opportunity.
From ‘Dosti’ in 1964 to ‘Deewana Mastana’ in 1998, they composed songs for 635 films, a majority of which became chart-breakers, catapulting scores of films to massive hits.