Singers and musicians from India and Bangladesh will pay a special tribute to the doyen of Assam music Bhupen Hazarika at an event in London this month.
The special concert on September 16 is being organised by social organisation Friends of Assam and Seven Sisters (FASS) in collaboration with Nehru Centre, cultural wing of Indian High Commission as part of the 90th birthday anniversary of the ‘bard of Brahmaputra’, whose voice fell silent on November 5, 2011.
Nahid Afrin, the young singer from Assam who was the runner-up in the last edition of Indian Idol Junior and famous accordion player Romen Choudhury will be among the several artistes from India and Bangladesh who will perform at the event.
The event will be chaired by Virander Paul, Deputy High Commissioner of India, while Khodeker M Talha, Acting High Commissioner of Bangladesh, is expected to be the guest of honour.
“The concert is a significant step in our endeavour to take Bhupen da to the global forum. On his 90th birth anniversary, India and Bangladesh artistes will unite to celebrate his musical journey,” says Rini Kakati, FASS coordinator for UK.
The programme, to be compered by Lalit Mohan Joshi, co-founder of the South Asian Cinema Foundation and film historian, will have an illustrated talk, power point presentation of the film clip “Bhupen Hazarika” and musical concert.
According to Kakati, there are about 700 Assamese people living in London.
Hazarika’s music encompasses the entire world, reflecting the mood and passion of the oppressed and downtrodden. Hailed as the uncrowned king of the lands of the entire northeast, Bengal and Bangladesh, Hazarika sang his first song ‘Biswa nijoy nojowan’ (in the second Assamese film “Indramalati”) in 1939 at the age of 12 and since then there was no looking back.
In addition to his native Assamese, Hazarika composed, wrote and sang for numerous Bengali and Hindi films from 1930s to the 1990s besides other songs. He was also one of the leading author-poets of Assam with more than 1,000 lyrics and several books on short stories, essays, travelogues, poems and children’s rhymes.
Hazarika produced and directed, composed music and sang for iconic Assamese films like “Era Batar Sur”, “Shakuntala”, “Lotighoti”, “Pratidhwani”, “Chick Mick Bijuli”, “Swikarokti” and “Siraj”. His most famous Hindi films include his long-time companion Kalpana Lajmi’s “Rudaali”, “Ek Pal”, “Darmiyaan”, “Daman” and “Kyon”, Sai Paranjpe’s “Papiha” and “Saaz”, “Mil Gayee Manzil Mujhe” and M F Husain’s “Gajagamini”.