Ek Akela iss Sheher Mein: A recital by Gulzar
An evening at the Spring Fever Festival
What better an evening could it be than sitting close to the legendary Gulzar and listen to his words, delve into the depths of romance, nostalgia, solitude and narcissism through poetry in the form of Nazms, and Ghazals. Everyone was mesmerized by the poetic charms of Gulzar. The evening started with Shekhar Sunjoy, who discussed about the sequel of the book –Hundred lyrics – called Another Hundred Lyrics in which, he has beautifully translated 10 songs penned by Gulzar.
Some of the songs mentioned in the book, were played, one after the other followed by the interesting anecdotes and instances by Gulzar about their writing and compositions. Then, Shekhar would read out his translated version of the songs. Some of the songs which were played were ‘Ek Akela Iss Sheher Mein’, ‘Chal Chhaiyaan Chhaiyaan’ ‘Chappa Chappa Charkha Chale’, “Jhalla (Jab Tak Hai Jaan)” , where Gulzar explains that the word is ‘Jhalla (Silly or ignorant)’, but is pronounced in Punjabi as “cjhalla” due to the emphatic phonetics used in the vibrant Punjabi language, “Dil toh Bachcha hai ji”. On the occasion, Gulzar also told the audience, “Vishal (Bharadwaj) is my young age. He is like a son to me. ‘Jab main chal ke thak jaata aur boodha ho jaata, tab usne aa kar haath thaam liya’ (Just when I would have been tired and grown old, he came and held my hand).”
“Secondly, the generation Vishal belongs to, he is a very debonair director, composer, writer. The best part is that he never stops to explore newness and different things. I know the nuances of this period, this generation, ‘Aur koi tareeka nahi hai iske bajaaye ke main aapka haath pakad loon aur jaanoon ke aap kya kar rahe hain aur kya sochte hain.’ He would compose one song, and after two days, he would come and say, ‘Bhai, gaana kuch aam sa, kuch predictable sa lag raha hai.’ He is a person who holds the capability to reject his own ideas.” said Gulzar, on the occasion.
There came a point where the whole amphitheatre went quiet. After all the evening couldn’t have been complete with one of the most emotional song,, yet the most unique song written by Gulzar. “Mera Kuch Saaman” from the movie ‘Ijaazat’ , which was sung live by a female singer, in a voice which brought tears to everyone’s eyes. Later, Gulzar told us about the background story about the music composition and the confusion that occurred to Pancham Da (R.D. Burman) and how Asha “Boudi” as Gulzar calls her, came to the rescue and gave the first tunes.
The event ended by Gulzar Signing the books by the fans. Thus the dream-like event came to an end.