Rahman Waves His Magic Wand, in Chennai
I was more than excited to get a couple of passes for the Live Life concert that ARR was performing on, on Saturday, courtesy of the Marg Construction group. I have travelled quite far to catch a good concert and Rahman has been evading me for a bit too long. It was good to catch up with his performance, live, right here in Chennai.
This is essentially going to be a post to “seendify”, all those who didn’t make it :)
First of all, my disappointments. I am not all that impressed with the stage and light settings. They made up for it eventually with the music and all, but It was less than impressive of a stage. Or I donno If I am being too demanding here. I’ve been to concerts where I’ve seen Yanni, and the likes of Sheryl Crow etc and a few others perform, and the sound and light settings, let alone the stage have been amazing. I have always associated live music to be part of that fulfilling experience, of being emerged in an expression of scintillating light and sound, but I guess you gotta make do with being able to see the artist on the stage on miniature (though I was on the VIP row) and for a better glimpse the screen.
Now that the whining bit is over, I have one word to describe the entire evening. Awesome.
They tried quite a few things from adding dynamic prop and such on screen, which didn’t quite gel with whatever else they were trying to do. But the selection of music was simply breath-taking. When it started off with “Kadhal Rojave” from Roja, One couldnt expect anything less.
One of the surprising and pleasant ones at that was the opening by Prasanna. I first heard his guitaring skills quite a few years back. But the man was totally in his form. It was quite evident that he is one of those rare souls who finds blissful moments just being drenched in music. It was way too evident.
I have been quite curious as to why not too many concerts happen here in Chennai. I think I have some answers. I was excited to finally get a chance to make that observation during this show.
1. I think Chennai-ites, really do stick to the old way of Courtyard Jester form. For some reason it felt like all those on stage, whoever they might be were the court jesters. As much as there is the respectful clap and encouraging, thats where it ended. Very few got carried away, atleast till “Oru Arabi Kadal Oram” kicked in. Interesting, I thought to myself.
2. As much as the stage was filled with stars, ranging all the way from Hariharan, Chitra, etc etc, Rahman got the maximum response. In other words, unless its a Rahman concert, I doubt most of these folks would turn up.
3. When Prasanna did his amazing mix of classical, Jazz, Rock fusion and I was wondering to myself how such a fusion would probably create an eclectic wave of shock, awe and roar among audiences in most places, the Chennai audience were… ahem… silent. Was it a silence of respect, or one of not being able to comprehend what it was all about?
Many questions still linger on. I am not sure if Chennai is ready for Pink Floyd and Yanni Concerts, but even amidst a slow and reserved crowd, Rahman had them on their feet. Hat’s off to him!