Friday, January 16, 2015 CULTURE

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Film maker Chashi Nazrul passes away

Cultural Correspondent

Chashi Nazrul Islam, a stalwart of Dallywood film, passed away on Sunday at the age of 73. He was suffering from cancer.
The news brought a shocking wave in the country’s film world. Shortly after his death, President Md Abdul Hamid, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Speaker Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury and BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia expressed condolence at his death in separate messages.
The Ekushey Padak and National Film Award winner Chashi Nazrul Islam was laid to rest at his mother’s grave at Shomoshpur village in Shreenagar upazila of Bikrampur district on Monday afternoon.
Before taken to Shomoshpur village for burial, two more janazas for the award-winning film maker were held at the Baitul Mukarram National Mosque and the Film Development Corporation (FDC).
A heart-rending environment  has been created at the FDC when the artistes have gathered there for paying their tributes to Chashi Nazrul.
He was given a guard of honour at the FDC in presence of Information Minister Hasanul Haque Inu and Cultural Affairs Minister Asaduzzaman Noor.
Later, the body of prominent filmmaker has been taken to Shaheed Minar premises for the people of all walks of life to pay their last respect. - See more at:
Chashi Nazrul, president of Jatiyatabadi Sangskritik Dal, cultural wing of BNP, was born in Munshiganj on October 23, 1941. He was the eldest among four brothers and three sisters. Chashi always wanted to be a hero like Dilip Kumar. He often sold his own books, even those of  friends to manage money for watching movies. At the age of 16, his father died and he joined  a job at the office of his uncle, the auditor general of Pakistan. He was irregular in office. Instead, he was working on cultural programs. He was a member of theatre organisation Krishti Sangha.
After he got sacked from that job he started to perform in programs at radio in 1965. He directed and voiced popular radio dramas Ramer Sumoti (1965), Socrates (1966), Sokhina Birongona (1974) etc.
Chashi started his career in visual media in 1964 when he got chance to work on television program through audition. He worked as assistant director of film Dui Digonto, directed by Obaidur Rahman. Later he assisted Fateh Lohani.
He participated in the Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971. After Bangladesh got independence, he made the first film on liberation war Ora Egaro Jon.
His prominent films included : Sangram(1974), Bhalo Manus(1975) , Bajimat (1978), Devdas (1982), Chandrakotha(1985), Mia Bhai(1987) Behula Lakhindar(1987), Mahajuddha(1988), Padma Meghna Jamuna    (1991), Desh Jati Zia(1993)Documentary, Shilpi(1995) Hasan Raja(2001),     Kamalpurer Juddha(2002), Megher Pore Megh(2004) and Drubhatara(2006).
Chashi Nazrul was honoured with a number of awards  including International Kalakar Award (2005), Best Director, Ekushey Padak(2004), Best Director , National Film Award,(1997), Best Director, Zahir Raihan Gold Medal(1995), National Film Award(1986), Best Director and Bangladesh Cine Journalist Association Award(1974)Best Director.
Meanwhile,  Four of the leading ladies of Dhaka filmdom who he worked with, shared their memories of the filmmaker.
Kobori: He was a towering figure in the realm of Bangladeshi film, and one of the best film directors the industry ever had. I had a good relationship with him; we were emotionally attached. While I foreshadowed his demise since his physical condition was gradually deteriorating, it still feels like a sudden blow.
I think the government could have done more for him; at least could have sent him abroad for a better treatment. I pray for the salvation of his soul.  
 

Last respect to Chashi Nazrul at FDC.

Anowara: I first met Chashi Nazrul Islam when I was a young actress who had just begun working in cinema. We had a very good family relation, and we maintained that throughout. He was one of the best directors I have worked with. I played Chandramukhi in his “Devdas”, and everyone appreciated my role. Chashi bhai was behind my success.  
He was an outstanding director who had the power to make the best out of his actors. I also worked under his direction in “Shubhoda”.
Bobita: The news of Chashi Nazrul Islam’s death hurts me. A filmmaker like him rarely comes in our film industry. But I think above all, he was a good human being, and a man of great stature. I started working with him when I just stepped into this arena. When I began my production house, I wanted him as director. We have countless memories. I worked in many of his films including, “Biroho Betha”, “Hason Raja” and “Padma Meghna Jamuna”. He is no more with us but his memories will remain forever. I pray for his departed soul.
Mousumi: He was one of the few people who enriched our film industry. I was fortunate that I got to work under his direction. He selected me to play Chandramukhi in his second adaptation of “Devdas”. He was a very good human being, and an amazing filmmaker.

Comment

Cultural Correspondent

Chashi Nazrul Islam, a stalwart of Dallywood film, passed away on Sunday at the age of 73. He was suffering from cancer.
The news brought a shocking wave in the country’s film world. Shortly after his death, President Md Abdul Hamid, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Speaker Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury and BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia expressed condolence at his death in separate messages.
The Ekushey Padak and National Film Award winner Chashi Nazrul Islam was laid to rest at his mother’s grave at Shomoshpur village in Shreenagar upazila of Bikrampur district on Monday afternoon.
Before taken to Shomoshpur village for burial, two more janazas for the award-winning film maker were held at the Baitul Mukarram National Mosque and the Film Development Corporation (FDC).
A heart-rending environment  has been created at the FDC when the artistes have gathered there for paying their tributes to Chashi Nazrul.
He was given a guard of honour at the FDC in presence of Information Minister Hasanul Haque Inu and Cultural Affairs Minister Asaduzzaman Noor.
Later, the body of prominent filmmaker has been taken to Shaheed Minar premises for the people of all walks of life to pay their last respect. - See more at:
Chashi Nazrul, president of Jatiyatabadi Sangskritik Dal, cultural wing of BNP, was born in Munshiganj on October 23, 1941. He was the eldest among four brothers and three sisters. Chashi always wanted to be a hero like Dilip Kumar. He often sold his own books, even those of  friends to manage money for watching movies. At the age of 16, his father died and he joined  a job at the office of his uncle, the auditor general of Pakistan. He was irregular in office. Instead, he was working on cultural programs. He was a member of theatre organisation Krishti Sangha.
After he got sacked from that job he started to perform in programs at radio in 1965. He directed and voiced popular radio dramas Ramer Sumoti (1965), Socrates (1966), Sokhina Birongona (1974) etc.
Chashi started his career in visual media in 1964 when he got chance to work on television program through audition. He worked as assistant director of film Dui Digonto, directed by Obaidur Rahman. Later he assisted Fateh Lohani.
He participated in the Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971. After Bangladesh got independence, he made the first film on liberation war Ora Egaro Jon.
His prominent films included : Sangram(1974), Bhalo Manus(1975) , Bajimat (1978), Devdas (1982), Chandrakotha(1985), Mia Bhai(1987) Behula Lakhindar(1987), Mahajuddha(1988), Padma Meghna Jamuna    (1991), Desh Jati Zia(1993)Documentary, Shilpi(1995) Hasan Raja(2001),     Kamalpurer Juddha(2002), Megher Pore Megh(2004) and Drubhatara(2006).
Chashi Nazrul was honoured with a number of awards  including International Kalakar Award (2005), Best Director, Ekushey Padak(2004), Best Director , National Film Award,(1997), Best Director, Zahir Raihan Gold Medal(1995), National Film Award(1986), Best Director and Bangladesh Cine Journalist Association Award(1974)Best Director.
Meanwhile,  Four of the leading ladies of Dhaka filmdom who he worked with, shared their memories of the filmmaker.
Kobori: He was a towering figure in the realm of Bangladeshi film, and one of the best film directors the industry ever had. I had a good relationship with him; we were emotionally attached. While I foreshadowed his demise since his physical condition was gradually deteriorating, it still feels like a sudden blow.
I think the government could have done more for him; at least could have sent him abroad for a better treatment. I pray for the salvation of his soul.  
 

Last respect to Chashi Nazrul at FDC.

Anowara: I first met Chashi Nazrul Islam when I was a young actress who had just begun working in cinema. We had a very good family relation, and we maintained that throughout. He was one of the best directors I have worked with. I played Chandramukhi in his “Devdas”, and everyone appreciated my role. Chashi bhai was behind my success.  
He was an outstanding director who had the power to make the best out of his actors. I also worked under his direction in “Shubhoda”.
Bobita: The news of Chashi Nazrul Islam’s death hurts me. A filmmaker like him rarely comes in our film industry. But I think above all, he was a good human being, and a man of great stature. I started working with him when I just stepped into this arena. When I began my production house, I wanted him as director. We have countless memories. I worked in many of his films including, “Biroho Betha”, “Hason Raja” and “Padma Meghna Jamuna”. He is no more with us but his memories will remain forever. I pray for his departed soul.
Mousumi: He was one of the few people who enriched our film industry. I was fortunate that I got to work under his direction. He selected me to play Chandramukhi in his second adaptation of “Devdas”. He was a very good human being, and an amazing filmmaker.


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British Theatre Folks staged Jamuna in Dhaka

Cultural Correspondent

Theatre Folks, an Oxford-based troupe of non-resident Bangladeshis, is now in Dhaka to stage as many as four shows of its much-acclaimed play ‘Jamuna’ at the two different venues in the city.
According to the programme, it has already staged two shows of the play on January 9 and 10 at the Natmandal of Dhaka University. On the other hand, third and fourth showsof the play was staged on Sunday and Monday at the Studio Theatre Hall of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA) in the city.
The play is written by Selina Shelley and directed by Mohammad Ali Haider. The cast of the play includes Selina Shelley, Manaj Hussain Shamim, Nupur, Adita and Soma, among others.
The story of ‘Jamuna’ evolves around the life of the central character of the play with the same title. Jamuna is a woman who lived through the Liberation War of Bangladesh in 1971. As a youth she had ventured to go to war as a freedom fighter. Not long after, she was captured and taken to an enemy camp, dealing with several months of imprisonment and sexual abuse there. Being raped and the mother of a war-child, Jamuna had become withdrawn. Later she married a fellow freedom fighter who lost all his family members in the war, and had another child. Only Jamuna’s husband knows her secret.
While living her life in hiding like a snail in a shell she embraced a form of sculpting to express her feelings. She creates her pieces with dried logs, branches, boughs and other found objects, likening them to herself and restoring their worth through her care. Her devotion towards her works makes her unable to draw a fine line between her life and her creations. Eventually her art gets her some appreciation and brings her to the attention of others. She re-gains her self-confidence after 35 long years and wants to speak out to free herself from her dark secret which sits heavily between herself and her daughters.
Although she wants to speak out after years of silence, Jamuna is unsure of herself and of how her story will be accepted by her daughters. What way will it affect her again?
An exhibition of Jamuna’s work has been organised, and she prepares herself for an exclusive interview.
By this time her daughter brings a proposal of marriage from the boy she likes. The parents of the boy want to announce the wedding when they come to see the exhibition, as they will soon leave the country to visit and perform a prestigious religious ritual, the Hajj.
This situation puts Jamuna in a great dilemma and she changes her mind. First she tries to postpone the exhibition and then her interview. But it is too late to deal it with her sponsor and organisers. Jamuna will have to face the journalist with the commitment of an exclusive interview. She was perplexed as to what she will do, how she will face the situation?
Jamuna, at last, lets herself out and tell the fate she had to undergo and accept; that she was sexually abused by occupation army, that her elder daughter is a war child and, most importantly, she has taken recourse to art with the ‘desire to have Durga’s power within’. The powerful play ends with reconciliation, with fought-back tears Jamuna and her daughters embrace each other in the last scene. The stage for the play was decorated with a few sculptures by Ferdousi Priyabhasini, continuous emotive music on traditional instruments enhanced the overall ambience. Selina Shelley, who enacted the role of Jamuna, was majestic. Other actors Syed Manzurul Hussain, Adita Hasan, Onindita Sarker, Sadia Ahammed, Arnila Guha Nolok and Soma Ferdoush were impressive too.

Comment

Cultural Correspondent

Theatre Folks, an Oxford-based troupe of non-resident Bangladeshis, is now in Dhaka to stage as many as four shows of its much-acclaimed play ‘Jamuna’ at the two different venues in the city.
According to the programme, it has already staged two shows of the play on January 9 and 10 at the Natmandal of Dhaka University. On the other hand, third and fourth showsof the play was staged on Sunday and Monday at the Studio Theatre Hall of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA) in the city.
The play is written by Selina Shelley and directed by Mohammad Ali Haider. The cast of the play includes Selina Shelley, Manaj Hussain Shamim, Nupur, Adita and Soma, among others.
The story of ‘Jamuna’ evolves around the life of the central character of the play with the same title. Jamuna is a woman who lived through the Liberation War of Bangladesh in 1971. As a youth she had ventured to go to war as a freedom fighter. Not long after, she was captured and taken to an enemy camp, dealing with several months of imprisonment and sexual abuse there. Being raped and the mother of a war-child, Jamuna had become withdrawn. Later she married a fellow freedom fighter who lost all his family members in the war, and had another child. Only Jamuna’s husband knows her secret.
While living her life in hiding like a snail in a shell she embraced a form of sculpting to express her feelings. She creates her pieces with dried logs, branches, boughs and other found objects, likening them to herself and restoring their worth through her care. Her devotion towards her works makes her unable to draw a fine line between her life and her creations. Eventually her art gets her some appreciation and brings her to the attention of others. She re-gains her self-confidence after 35 long years and wants to speak out to free herself from her dark secret which sits heavily between herself and her daughters.
Although she wants to speak out after years of silence, Jamuna is unsure of herself and of how her story will be accepted by her daughters. What way will it affect her again?
An exhibition of Jamuna’s work has been organised, and she prepares herself for an exclusive interview.
By this time her daughter brings a proposal of marriage from the boy she likes. The parents of the boy want to announce the wedding when they come to see the exhibition, as they will soon leave the country to visit and perform a prestigious religious ritual, the Hajj.
This situation puts Jamuna in a great dilemma and she changes her mind. First she tries to postpone the exhibition and then her interview. But it is too late to deal it with her sponsor and organisers. Jamuna will have to face the journalist with the commitment of an exclusive interview. She was perplexed as to what she will do, how she will face the situation?
Jamuna, at last, lets herself out and tell the fate she had to undergo and accept; that she was sexually abused by occupation army, that her elder daughter is a war child and, most importantly, she has taken recourse to art with the ‘desire to have Durga’s power within’. The powerful play ends with reconciliation, with fought-back tears Jamuna and her daughters embrace each other in the last scene. The stage for the play was decorated with a few sculptures by Ferdousi Priyabhasini, continuous emotive music on traditional instruments enhanced the overall ambience. Selina Shelley, who enacted the role of Jamuna, was majestic. Other actors Syed Manzurul Hussain, Adita Hasan, Onindita Sarker, Sadia Ahammed, Arnila Guha Nolok and Soma Ferdoush were impressive too.


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Three-day Sufi Music Fest begins in Dhaka on Jan 24

Cultural Correspondent

Egyptian troupe Mawlawiyah starts with an ode to God on subtle musical notes produced through three percussion instruments and a flute.

A three-day International Sufi Music Festival 2015, the first of its kind in Bangladesh,  will begin at the Army Museum Ground, Bijoy Sharani, in the capital on January 27-29). Fifteen solo artistes and troupes from nine countries of the world will perform their distinctive patterns and styles of Sufi music at the festival.
IFIC Bank is the title sponsor of the event with Blues Communications organizing the live performance.
Noted artistes Rob Fakir, Shafi Mondal and his troupe, Arnab and his troupe and Labik Kamal Gaurob and his troupe from Bangladesh will represent Bangladeshi mystic styles at the festival. Javed Ali, Munnawar Masoom and Arko Mukherjee from India and celebrated artiste Rahat Fateh Ali Khan from Pakistan will also perform at the festival.
A Danish music troupe Serenas will reflects their roots, faith, ethnicity and cultural upbringing in their music while Egyptian troupe Mawlawiyah, led by singer Amer Eltony, will present Egyptian heritage, philosophy of Sufism and cultural identity at the festival.
Mawlawiyah starts with an ode to God on subtle musical notes produced through three percussion instruments and a flute. It accelerates to a crescendo of whirling exhilaration and singing that combined together produces that perfect picture of rhythm in motion. To witness such euphoria, where any onlooking crowd cheers and applauds, is truly surrendering oneself to the pleasures of music.
A Brazilian young musicians’ troupe Projeto Sarava will perform their original compositions along with the interpretations of popular musical genres in Dhaka.
The Dhaka music lovers will also have the privilege to listen to indigenous African music as a Gujarati troupe named Sidi Goma will perform here. Sidis are a heterogeneous population of Indians of East African Origins who live in various regions throughout India.
A Tunisian troupe called Mechket will also perform in the festival. Sufi Music in Tunisia consists of both popular and ethnic elements. Mechket, which literally translates to source of light, has taken up songs from the traditional Tunisian Sufi style but merged them with other influences from the region. Traditional Sufi music in Tunisia is performed only with percussion, but Mechket has introduced violins, bass guitars and the piano to the mix.
For now there is only “the political boxing match” played out between contrasting political ideologies in Tunisia, felt Farouk Slaoui, a singer of Mechket. But the most positive development is “the freedom of expression” that has at least been insured over the last two years.
Zik’r will offer mystical Flamenco Music—a genre of Spanish folk music from Andalusia in southern Spain. It includes cante (singing), toque (guitar playing), baile (dance) and palmas (handclaps).
The  genre is thought to have grown out of Andalusian and Romani music and dance styles. Flamenco is often associated with the gitanos (Romani people of Spain) and a number of famous flamenco artists are of this ethnicity. Flamenco music was first recorded in the late 18th century but the genre underwent a dramatic development in the late 19th century.
In recent years flamenco has become popular all over the world and is taught in many countries. In Japan there are more flamenco academies than there are in Spain.[5][6] On November 16, 2010 UNESCO declared flamenco one of the Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity.[7]
“This is for the first time International Sufi Festival is going to be held in Bangladesh. It took us a long time to gear up for the festival. We visited several international music festivals to choose artistes for the Sufi Festival 2015,” according to Farhadul Islam, CEO of Blues Communications. 
Music lovers can collect festival tickets from Bengal Gallery of Fine Arts, Dhanmondi; Bengal Art Lounge, Gulshan-1 and Haritaki Café, Banani – from January 14.

Comment

Cultural Correspondent

Egyptian troupe Mawlawiyah starts with an ode to God on subtle musical notes produced through three percussion instruments and a flute.

A three-day International Sufi Music Festival 2015, the first of its kind in Bangladesh,  will begin at the Army Museum Ground, Bijoy Sharani, in the capital on January 27-29). Fifteen solo artistes and troupes from nine countries of the world will perform their distinctive patterns and styles of Sufi music at the festival.
IFIC Bank is the title sponsor of the event with Blues Communications organizing the live performance.
Noted artistes Rob Fakir, Shafi Mondal and his troupe, Arnab and his troupe and Labik Kamal Gaurob and his troupe from Bangladesh will represent Bangladeshi mystic styles at the festival. Javed Ali, Munnawar Masoom and Arko Mukherjee from India and celebrated artiste Rahat Fateh Ali Khan from Pakistan will also perform at the festival.
A Danish music troupe Serenas will reflects their roots, faith, ethnicity and cultural upbringing in their music while Egyptian troupe Mawlawiyah, led by singer Amer Eltony, will present Egyptian heritage, philosophy of Sufism and cultural identity at the festival.
Mawlawiyah starts with an ode to God on subtle musical notes produced through three percussion instruments and a flute. It accelerates to a crescendo of whirling exhilaration and singing that combined together produces that perfect picture of rhythm in motion. To witness such euphoria, where any onlooking crowd cheers and applauds, is truly surrendering oneself to the pleasures of music.
A Brazilian young musicians’ troupe Projeto Sarava will perform their original compositions along with the interpretations of popular musical genres in Dhaka.
The Dhaka music lovers will also have the privilege to listen to indigenous African music as a Gujarati troupe named Sidi Goma will perform here. Sidis are a heterogeneous population of Indians of East African Origins who live in various regions throughout India.
A Tunisian troupe called Mechket will also perform in the festival. Sufi Music in Tunisia consists of both popular and ethnic elements. Mechket, which literally translates to source of light, has taken up songs from the traditional Tunisian Sufi style but merged them with other influences from the region. Traditional Sufi music in Tunisia is performed only with percussion, but Mechket has introduced violins, bass guitars and the piano to the mix.
For now there is only “the political boxing match” played out between contrasting political ideologies in Tunisia, felt Farouk Slaoui, a singer of Mechket. But the most positive development is “the freedom of expression” that has at least been insured over the last two years.
Zik’r will offer mystical Flamenco Music—a genre of Spanish folk music from Andalusia in southern Spain. It includes cante (singing), toque (guitar playing), baile (dance) and palmas (handclaps).
The  genre is thought to have grown out of Andalusian and Romani music and dance styles. Flamenco is often associated with the gitanos (Romani people of Spain) and a number of famous flamenco artists are of this ethnicity. Flamenco music was first recorded in the late 18th century but the genre underwent a dramatic development in the late 19th century.
In recent years flamenco has become popular all over the world and is taught in many countries. In Japan there are more flamenco academies than there are in Spain.[5][6] On November 16, 2010 UNESCO declared flamenco one of the Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity.[7]
“This is for the first time International Sufi Festival is going to be held in Bangladesh. It took us a long time to gear up for the festival. We visited several international music festivals to choose artistes for the Sufi Festival 2015,” according to Farhadul Islam, CEO of Blues Communications. 
Music lovers can collect festival tickets from Bengal Gallery of Fine Arts, Dhanmondi; Bengal Art Lounge, Gulshan-1 and Haritaki Café, Banani – from January 14.


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