Popular and successful music director of Hindi Cinema Pritam Chakraborty performed for the first time in New Zealand on March 11, 2016 and the show, aptly named, ‘Music Maestro Pritam Live in Concert,’ held at the Logan Campbell Centre in Auckland drew a large crowd of music aficionados.
Pritam’s Kiwi debut started half an hour behind schedule, but once on stage, the musician delivered an excellent show which ran for more than three hours.
Along with Pritam were his musical troupe and technicians (more than 20 people) and four young and versatile singers in Nakash Aziz, Antara Mitra, Aditi Singh Sharma and Sreerama Chandra.
Another highlight of the evening was the chorus on stage – local singers given an opportunity to be part of an extravagant musical night.
The man behind the sound tracks of 110 Hindi films commenced the proceedings with the chartbuster ‘Tu Hi Meri Shab Hai’ (from the 2006 release ‘Gangster’) strumming the Guitar and rendering the song.
He quickly followed by singing ‘Tumko Jo Paaya’ (‘Crook,’ which was extensively shot in Australia). The versatile musician also shared the origins of the song ‘Ya Ali’ (‘Gangster’) by singing the original Bengali song; whose rights were bought for the track to be recreated in Hindi.
This opening musical sequence by Pritam set the mood for the evening where foot tapping melody and fast beats would have the audiences swoon and dance in equal measures. At this point he was joined by his accompanying singers; first up was Sreerama, a 28-year-old singer from Hyderabad, who shot to fame after winning the fifth season of the reality musical show ‘Indian Idol.’
The audience then saw Aditi Singh Sharma (the voice behind ‘Dhoom 3’ title track) come on stage. She has performed earlier in Auckland (accompanying singer Mohit Chauhan in 2011).
Antara Mitra was the next to cast a spell on the audience. Her voice was behind the immensely successful tracks of the recently released Shahrukh Khan starrer ‘Dilwale.’ Rounding off Pritam’s team on stage was Nakash Aziz, the voice of Salman Khan in ‘Selfie Le Le Re.’
What followed was an amazing team display of musical brilliance. Songs from Pritam’s hit films like ‘Life in a Metro’ (‘Oh Meri Jaan’), ‘Yeh Jawaani Hain Deewani’ (‘Kabira’) and many more were performed by the fantastic five.
Before heading into the show’s interval, Pritam called for requests.
The interval was too long to endure-an increasing feature in recent shows.
The second half of the show was initiated by Nakash, Antara, Aditi and Sreerama singing yester-year classics which the Auckland audience had requested. Songs like ‘Roz Roz Aankho Tale’ (‘Jeeva’), ‘Abhi Na Jao Chhod Ke’ (‘Kaala Bazaar’) were pleasing, demonstrating the versatility of the singers and the musically fluid format of the show.
The performers then recreated a musical set piece which has gained popularity from the show Coke Studio on MTV. They sat together and rendered portions of musical tracks –where one melody blended into the other.
The Dance Party
The finale of the show resembled a dance party. Pritam walked around the auditorium clicking selfies with the crowd. With Holi around the corner, the last track for the night was ‘Balam Pichkari,’ in which they applied Gulal (red colour) on people.
‘Music Maestro Pritam Live in Concert,’ was a well organised event by Aariaa Events Limited. Dinesh and Rahul Raniga worked tirelessly to make this large scale musical evening a success. This event again highlighted Auckland’s increasing importance as an attractive overseas destination for performers in India.
More importantly, it was further evidence of the Indian community supporting such events.