Monday, September 6, 2010

Bursting in a song

My husband says I am a film addict. More than that he concludes that I can and love to watch same movies again and again and well, almost always on TV . I have to admit that he is right ...almost. I love 'my kind of cinema' and I do not enjoy watching movies in cinema hall generally. Somehow, the comfort of my home is important for me to watch a movie . It always seems to amaze me how films(and sometimes television ) are my answer no matter what life might throw my way. There is always a movie to fit my mood and console my feelings. Its difficult to worry about problems and mess in the office when a TCM musical is going on. Similarly, I am unable to feel angry or frustrated for long from my real life if a funny / romantic movie is going on. So its typical for me to come home and collapse wondering what a busy day was all about and then almost like a magic the Tv screen starts telling me tales - some known (but I do not mind hearing them again like a greedy child) and some unknown, which make me dream endlessly about places and people I know not. But my favorites are musicals . They never fail to pep up my spirits .
Do you ever get the urge of bursting in a song while you are in middle of a conversation- a serious one ? Well, I do. When I was a schoolgirl, a favorite cousin very wisely told me that we like the bollywood songs so much because somewhere in our mind we picturise them with us in it . I thought it was a joke at that time. Now I believe in it . No wonder I think musicals are very real cinema. I feel disappointed that we , in India experimented with musicals (the Broadway kind) in very few projects . I can recall Amol Palekar’s Thoda sa Roomani Ho Jaye and some of Sai paranjape’s movies say Katha . But other than that though songs were part of most movies, they were not musicals in the Broadway style. I mean in Indian movies, characters do not burst in the songs while doing normal chores. Songs do not replace dialogues mostly ….they are carefully woven in the storyline. Occasions are created for them .The main function of musical numbers in Bollywood films remains to express emotion. Broadway musical numbers, on the other hand, primarily drive the plot. While Broadway musical numbers are integrated into the narrative, Bollywood musical numbers usually are not. Rather, they’re metaphors, removed from the plot, that show how a character feels, not what the character is actually doing.
But what I miss is movies like My fair Lady , Singing in the Rain ,more recent ones like Mamma Mia, Chicago, Moulin rouge, and Enchanted ………..and many many more . The 1950s and 1960s Hollywood musicals are my all time favorite. However it is heartening to find that the trend of making musicals has not stopped since then. Most of Disney's movies including animations are musicals. The recent High school Musical series was fabulous and I adore Glee on Star world .
India we did not experiment with this genre much.Some Devanand and Gurudutt movies came pretty close to be categorized with these but mostly mainstream cinema in India remained non Broadway musical that is with music- dance sequences only. Such a shame , if you ask me.
It seems perfectly normal to me that people at times may like to sing and dance while going through their normal daily life. I also feel at times the words of a song describe our feelings much more aptly than any length of prose. No wonder at times I find people humming a particular song in a particular mood. There are songs which remind us of some event or someone and there are songs which remind us of ourselves in a particular mood. We all have songs associated with college days , school days, birthdays , our friend circle and many other such milestones of life. But still most of us , even those who love songs and movies, would be shocked to find someone singing publicly . Almost how the guy in Enchanted was embarrassed when Princess Giselle burst into her song in the Central park, NY .
My friend Rani tries hard, not to start singing loud while in office or with her hubby . Her husband like many others feel that bursting in a song is unreal . I too resist my urge to sing --- mostly . But I do sing loud with the radio, when I am alone in the car and of course, I am an experienced bathroom singer. But even on other occasions it is difficult not to imagine a song in my mind. Try this, it is very de-stressing to imagine a song with you in its picturisation while you are in between a boring meeting /conference. Or still better, give lines to each of the persons sitting with you( of course in your mind). This game is so hilarious that at times I find myself smiling or giggling while others give me puzzled look. But take it from me that this is just a poor substitute of the joy you can feel rushing into you while singing out loud. Uncaring of your creaking voice, unaware of the frowns from others and ignoring the astonished look of people walking with you. Its most liberating feeling that dawn on you when you unbind yourself from what others will say. It is almost magical. So take my advice and next time you find Julie Andrews declaring hills to be alive with the sound of music, do not hesitate in joining her in her declaration. …and remember to do it aloud . Musicals , I repeat , are manifestations of how things should be - alive , happy and moving .


कुमार आलोक said...

हमारी संस्कृति में संगीत साधना है । वहीं पश्चिम में मौज मस्ती और उल्लासित होने के क्षण। बाथरुम एक ऐसा जगह है जहां आपकी आवाज प्रतिध्वनित होती है ..साउंड स्टूडियों की भांति गूंजती है तो ऐसा लगता है कि हम भी कम नही । अगर आप पैक्ड रिकार्डिंग स्टूडियों में कान में माइक्रो फोन लगाकर गायेंगे तो आपको अहसास होगा कि कुमार शानू ..बगैरह गायकों से अच्छा गा सकते है । वैसे भी टेबुल कुर्सी को तबला बनाया जैये और कुमार शानू को घर में बिठाकर गवाया जाये ..तो वहीं आवाज आपको साधारण लगेगी ।बचपन में अकेले में जब गाया करते थे तो सही में अपने आपको पिक्चराइज हुआ पाते थे ठिक उसी तरह गोलमाल के गाने की तरह ..सपनों में देखा सपना ....। हालीवुड के बारे में तो ज्यादा नही जानता .. लेकिन हिंदी फिल्मों के गीतों ने मनोरंजन के साथ साथ सामाजिक बदलाव और राष्ट्र प्रेम के क्षेत्र में भी अहम भूमिका निभाइ है । तुम अगर मुझको ना चाहो (दिल ही तो है ) को बचपन में देखा था ..ज्यादा नही गौर किया था ...राजकपूर का गाना ..और नूतन का इठलाना ...मुहब्बत करने वाले दो दिवानों का फेश एक्सप्रेशन देखने लायक है ।
एक और बहुत ही सुंदर विषय पर बेहतरीन विश्लेषण..बधाइ स्वीकार करें ।

MARCH said...

This article too has the unique Atoorva stamp on it. Detailed analysis of so common feelings in a very uncommon style. I fear if some board/commission paper setter sees your blog, he may think of making subjects chosen by you the topics for essay question in any examination. I am sure many like me would fail in the examination only to find out later on your blog that they could have crafted the essay in such a beautiful manner!

MARCH said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Gautam Kumar Kutariyar गौतम कुमार कुटरियार said...

शायद कोलकाता राजभाषा अनुभाग को आपकी छुपी हुई गायन प्रतिभा का ज्ञान नहीं था, अन्यथा, गुस्ताख़ी माफ़, वे अनुनय विनय कर के शौर्जो सर की तरह आपको भी पखवाड़ा समापन समारोह में गाने को मना जरूर लेते।

Anyway, पढ़ कर अच्छा लगा।