Thursday, June 20, 2024

‘Bollywood Lietmotif Also’: Tete-a-tete with Neil


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By Our Special Correspondent

 SHILLONG: Shillong’s very own.Neil Nongkynrih whose brain child the Shillong Chamber Choir which shot into national prominence when they won the India’s Got Talent, on Colors TV last year, will be performing their first rehearsed fusion on home turf this weekend. SCC which was invited to perform for US President Barack Obama during his most recent visit to India, in Delhi, begin one of their most hectic performance phases with the concerts in Shillong this weekend. This is one Christmas, they will be away from home. Here is a quick chat with Neil and a preview into his Bollywood leitmotifs Also”

ST: So why the name “Bollywood Leitmotifs Also.”

NN: “Bollywood” you know. “Leitmotifs” in musical terms means musical references. Our concert will have a lot of references to Bollywood tunes – mind you, we’re not doing straight cover versions of these popular songs but with an “SCC twist!”

ST: Why the word “Also”.

NN: Well I used the word also because it’s not just Bollywood numbers we’re doing – there will also be other types of music. Otherwise you don’t get a typical Shillong Chamber Concert.

ST: You are known for being multi- Genre so is this one of those things?

NN: Yes. Typical of our concert there will be excerpts from “My Fair Lady”,Khasi music and even Strauss – but sung in Hindi etc

ST: “Strauss” the Austrian Composer sung in Hindi ?

NN: Why not ? If German Operas can be translated to English, then why not Hindi. It’s a relatively new thing for me and so far it has had a good response especially to the general public who maybe are underexposed to opera.

ST: Tell us a little bit about the Vienna Chamber Orchestra.

NN: They are one of the top Orchestras in the world and have been around for years. Of course they are known more for Western Classical music but this time round they will be playing more ‘lighter’ stuff with us. They are a wonderful bunch. The Shillong Chamber Choir keeps in contact with them over the years we’ve known them.

ST: What is “Special” about this concert

NN: Well, its the first time we’re doing a “properly rehearsed” public concert in Shillong after winning India’s Got Talent . We’re working hard.Hope people will enjoy it.

ST: Tell us about your experince at the 2nd Global Indian Music Awards.

NN: Well, it was great to meet Shankar, Ehsaan & Loy. We performed together. Shankar sang my revamped version of ‘Kal ho na ho’ which they wrote and it was great fun. Loy, I met again after many years and the whole experience was very heart warming. The programme will be on air on the 30th of October i.e on sunday from 7 pm onwards on Colors channel. Although I felt I didn’t play my very best that evening

ST: Tell us about DESHH

NN: They are a band from Chennai. Two Percussionists, Bass and Guitar. Wonderful lads who first played with us in Chennai this year in February. I liked their attitude.They are very complying.

ST: What is the schedule like for the next few months.

NN: We have concerts almost every three days until January. Some are neck-to-neck. A lot of travelling.

ST: So Christmas won’t be at home?

NN: Unfortunately we even have a concert outside Shillong on the 24th of December.

ST: You’re performing for the public of Shillong on 28 & 29 after a long gap. What do you think will be the public response?

NN: Shillong is where our home audience is. They have always been supportive and kind. Its a great opporunity for us to perform before a home crowd and to connect with them once again through our music. Besides this is a great fusion of east, west and indigenous music which they will be deligted to hear!


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