Thursday December 20, 2012
Life of the party
By P. ARUNA
The Kuala Lumpur International Indian Music Festival, despite a reduced line-up, pushed on with quality performances.
EVERY concert has a show-stopping moment. Watching two South Indian film industry legends, veteran actor Kamal Haasan and renowned 1980s music director Ilayaraja, on stage performing the hit song Thenpaandi Cheemayile, Therodum Veedhiyile together, proved to be the highlight of the Kuala Lumpur International Indian Music Festival (KLIIMF) 2012 for the thousands who gathered at Stadium Bukit Jalil last Saturday.
As music maestro Ilayaraja hummed the melodious tune, the crowd erupted in a frenzy of screams, cheers and excitement. The song, from the 1987 movie Nagayan, is arguably veteran music composer Ilayaraja’s finest work in the movie that saw Kamal Haasan playing the lead role.
However, music director Yuvan Shankar Raja, who is Ilayaraja’s son, was the star of the concert. Earlier on, he made a fiery, dramatic entrance with his film soundtrack work flashing on a huge white screen on stage.
The curtain then dropped to reveal Yuvan standing on stage while sparks rained on him with the theme music from the hit action thriller film Mankatha playing in the background. Talk about theatrics!
Yuvan, 33, who is a highly regarded music composer in the contemporary South Indian film industry, went on to perform hit songs from movies like Goa, Billa II, Pattiyal and Siva Manasula Sakthi. He was accompanied by playback singers Udit Narayan, Haricharan and Suchitra.
The 12-hour marathon show, which began at noon, and went on past midnight, saw music fans thronging the venue, and paying up to RM328 for a ticket.
If you wanted showbiz dazzle, this event had it in spades. The energetic performances, special appearances by big screen heartthrobs and pop savvy numbers mesmerised the audience, who did not mind being on their feet for hours, cheering for the stars.
Then again, there were a few grumbles about the concert line-up. Even though the appearances by dashing actors Karthi and Jeeva got the ladies swooning, those who had been eagerly anticipating the appearance of actors Dhanush, Arya and Silambarasan (as advertised in the promotional material) were left disappointed when the stars never turned up.
Yuvan later tweeted that the Indian stars were unable to make it due to their tight schedules.
“If this is the case, why did they advertise all those names without even confirming their attendance?” asked a fan on the event’s official Facebook page. Other big names included in the promotional material who did not turn up included actresses Sneha and Lakshmi Rai, actors Prasanna, Jayam Ravi and Vishal.
Some dissatisfied ticket-buyers have even created a Facebook page, demanding an explanation from the organisers, Stone Events, who have promised to get back to them. On the bright side, the weather was good, the music was good and the artistes who turned up put on a fantastic show ... enough to redeem KLIIMF 2012 as a night out to remember.