Daijiworld Media Network - Doha
Doha, Sep 21: Enchanting Preema Pinto and melodious Remy D’Souza have moved one step closer to realizing their long-cherished dream of becoming the best singers of Mangalorean origin in the gulf countries. As Konkani’s most entertaining and equally eloquent compere CGS Taccode announced the names of the toppers in the male and female category of the first semi-finals of the third edition of Konkani’s greatest reality show Gulf Voice of Mangalore, the full-house audience at the majestic Al Ghazal Club rose in jubilation in appreciation of the melismatic singing that kept them glued to their seats for over 3 hours.
As Qatar is hosting the finals of Gulf Voice of the Mangalore III on October 19, 2012, there is no wonder that all other participants from other GCC countries will be noting the performances of Preema and Remy closely since finalists from the host country will be the favourite ones specially as they will backed by vociferous audience. Going by today’s performances Preema and Remy have sent a strong signal to all in the fray that they are going to the hot favourites to Gulf Voice of Mangalore crown. While it will second consecutive finals for Preema at the GVOM, Remy has made his maiden entry to the finals.
It was indeed super contest wherein only the best performance could send the two of the semi-finalists to the finals. Going by the judges and the reactions of the gathering, the Qatar semi-finals were as good as finals since each of the contestant came up with sterling performances leaving the judges in a dilemma to choose the best voices. But judges were up to the task and the end result clearly indicated that. Konkani’s evergreen singer Prem Lobo, master composer and musician Alwyn Noronha and ace base guitarist Ashith Pinto who were specially flown in as judges for the semi-finals proved that they are best in the business with their wealth of experience in Konkani music.
Earlier the Doha semi-finals hosted by Mangalore Cultural Association (MCA) began with the playing of MCA anthem. MCA also celebrated Monthi Fest with Novem Jevann on the occasion. MCA member Arthur Pais welcomed the audience for the twin programmes of GVOM III semi-finals and Novem Jevann and invited the MCA president Harry Lobo, vice-president Jason Quadros as well as the Advisory committee members Felix Lobo, Wilfred Fernandes and Jerry Pinto. The programme was given a formal inauguration with the lighting of the lamp by the MCA president, vice-president and advisory committee members. The judges of the evening Prem Lobo, Alwyn Noronha and Ashith Pinto then were introducted to the gathering by Arthur were invited to the stage and mark sheets were handed over to them by Felix Lobo, Jerry Pinto and Wilfred Fernandes respectively. The contest started with the entry of Konkani’s ace compere CGS Taccode’s entry to the stage.
CGS has been renowned for his unique brand of compering which often has ‘tadka’ of ‘desi’ humour and pun in Mangalore and abroad.
The first contestant of the evening was Namita D’Souza who gave a perfect start to the contest with wonderful rendering of ‘”Chali Thi Jallchi Vaat’’, a well-acclaimed composition of Yodelling King Melwyn Peris which is originally sung by incomparable Reena Goveas nee D’Souza. Namita’s performance was a clear signal to the remaining contestants that they need to raise their bar several notches higher in order to surpass her and that was what the second contestant Jovita D’Souza came up with. Jovita who was the semi-finalist at the second edition of GVOM was at her best while rendering young and melodious Munita Veigas’ popular number ‘Hanvi Mogar Podlam’, composed by the late Konkann Kogull Wilfy Rebimbus.
The foot-tapping number received a huge round of applause from the audience.
Qatar’s favourite female voice Preema Pinto, the first runners-up at the last edition of GVOM surely is the owner of mellifluous voice. Her rendition of ‘Fondar Tujea’, a masterpiece created by Alwyn Noronha Bajpe, one of the judges of the evening and originally sung by Konkani’s top singer Babita Pinto nee D’Costa was one of the highlights of the evening. No wonder she had the judges as well the audience almost in tears. Perhaps the disappointment of missing the crown last time by a whisker and her passion for singing played a key role in Preema delivering such a fabulous performance which ultimately was adjudged best of the evening among the female contestants by the august jury.
Eva Wilma Pinto is another sweet voice of Qatar who too had made it to the semi-finals of GVOM II.
Her choice of song ‘Bapaichea Manak’ is one of the most emotional numbers of recent times and it has been composed by Veena Pais nee Rebimbus in honour of her late illustrious father, legendary Wilfy Rebimbus. Again this song has been sung by melodious Babita Pinto. Wilma’s moving performance was followed by Nina Fernandes’ touching rendition of ‘Air India Express’ another emotional number composed by Veena Pais and sung by Babita Pinto. Nina’s sweet voice is tailor-made for such emotional numbers and again she lived up to the billing of being one of the finest singers of Qatar and a hot favourite to make it to the finals. She too was a semi-finalist at the GVOM II.
The performances by all the female contestants was of such high standards that audience was left stunned in sheer appreciation of the perfect blend of melodious singing and equally matching performance by each one of the contestants. For sure judges Prem, Alwyn and Ashith had difficult time is selecting the best one. It was also heralding of what was in store when contest would start for the male semi-finalists. And no one was disappointed as Qatar’s Top-7 male voices dished out a wonderful performance through their superlative singing.
First on the stage was Vincent Fernandes who of recent has taken Qatar by storm with his singing prowess. His soulful rendition of ‘Chintam Sadam’, one of the well-known numbers of Mandd Sobhann penned by Melvyn Rodrigues and sung originally by Gazal King Anup Jalota, was one of the best performances of the evening.
‘Angelina’, a foot-tapping popular song composed by the late Wilfy Rebimbus and originally sung by Konani’s Golden Boy Rony D’Cunha was the choice of next contestant Rony Fernandes. As judges were to comment later, Rony with his attractive voice did complete justice to the composition. Alwyn Noronha’s Konkani album ‘Bhangramanni’ has been hailed as one of the best ones in recent times. Naveen Pinto, a semi-finalist of GVOM II and the finalist at the recently-held SOAD-3 International, chose another masterpiece composed by Alwyn Noronha for ‘Bhangramanni’ ‘Hea Mujea Jivitant’ originally sung by Ravindra Prabhu, better known as S P Balasubrahmaniam of Dakshina Kannada. Naveen has a sonorous voice that often leaves the listeners asking for more and he was at his best again during the semi-finals today.
Alphonse D’Silva’s voice has close resemblance to that of Konkani’s first and original showman Jerome D’Souza. His superb rendition of Mandd Sobhann’s ‘Sudsudea Renvecher’ sung by Rony D’Cunha was one of the best ones of the evening. Wilson Mendonca is a favourite singer of Qatar audience. He has a special aura and charisma that makes him popular among the audience and he hardly disappoints them. Usually known for foot-tapping numbers that drive audience to the dance floor, Wilson showed another facet of his immense talent with the sweet rendering of ‘Dhudant Dhuto Tuje Paay’, hailed as one of the best-ever compositions of the late Wilfy Rebimbus. Qatar’s rock star Harry Correa’s performance was received with thunderous applause by the audience. ‘Manglur Xera’ song, another popular number of the late Wilfy Rebimbus, sung by Konkani’s Mohd Rafi Ivan was Harry’s choice and his rendition proved that he is one of the best singers of Qatar and that audience loved him perform live.
The last contestant of the evening was Remy D’Souza, a melodious singer and musician par excellence. He came up with a performance that left everyone spellbound with the rendition of Mandd Sobhann’s acclaimed number ‘Maka Kallana’, penned by Melvyn Rodrigues and sung by Butto. His sterling performance left even the jury members speechless and as it transpired later, he was chosen as the best male voice of Qatar. For sure Remy will be one of hot favourites in the finals with his melodious voice and extraordinary singing talent.
Qatar’s famed band Music City led by Prasad Mathew provided the music for the semi-finals. Joswin Pinto, a well-known lead guitarist from Mangalore was flown in specially from Mangalore for the contest and he joined Music City on the stage as the lead guitarist. Qatar’s ace guitarist Austin Monteiro too joined the band on the bass guitar.
Once the contest was over, a short stage programme was held during which ‘Tambde Gulle’, book penned by Cyril G Sequeira (CGS Taccode) was released by Felix Lobo, the advisory committee member of MCA Qatar. CGS was felicitated on the occasion by MCA his contribution to Konkani. He was draped with a shawl and was presented with a memento and citation. Veena Pais read the citation. Acknowledging the honour, CGS said that he was overwhelmed for having been given honour recognizing his service to Konkani.
Prior to this Novem was distributed among the audience after MCA member Benjamin Rebeiro had invoked God’s blessings. MCA advisory committee member Wilfred Fernandes delivered a message on Monthi Fest and its importance among Mangaloreans.
A short felicitation programme wherein all the semi-finalists, judges of the semi-finals, judges of the auditions and MCA members who have excelled in academics were honoured. While Wilfred Fernandes presented mementos to the semi-finalists, Jerry Pinto presented the mementos to the judges of the auditions and judges for the semi-finals. Felix Lobo then presented mementos to students who have excelled in academics. Those who were honoured were Sana Britto, Rupal Aroza, Affney Loveney, Ryan Danti and Ashlyn D'Souza. MCA president Harry Lobo was present on the dais. Clement Saldanha proposed the vote of thanks. The stage programme was compered by Arthur Pais.
An entertainment programme by MCA members and judges of semi-finals Prem Lobo, Alwyn Noronha, Ashith Pinto and judge of auditions Joyce Mascarenhas and Rupert Lobo, the finalist of GVOM II was held before the Novem Jevann. The entertainment began with the peppy number Bhetlelem Chedum by Alwyn Noronha. This was followed by the late Wilfy Rebimbus’ foot-tapping number ‘Jaite Tarnate’ by Prem, Alwyn and Ashith. Alwyn and Prem’s duo also belted another super hit song ‘Aaichim Festam’. Joyce Mascarenhas who was the judge for the auditions is a well-known fabulous singer.
Her duet with Qatar’s most sought-after voice Rupert Lobo was the special attraction and was received with huge applause by the jam-packed audience. Qatar’s most elegant young dancers Sana Britto, Rupal Aroza, Cybil D'Souza, Emilita Martis and Anushka Fernandes’ scintillating dance to the tunes of super duper jumpy number Yore Pavsa Yore was one of the most eye-catching performances of the evening.
Humor is a dicey weapon. You may crack a joke that sends a room of people into peals of laughter. The same joke can fall flat on another set of people and you may regret that dinosaurs are not around to come and gobble you up. However, Qatar’s famed comedians Aloysius D'Souza, Charles D'Mello Pangla, Sandeep Noronha, Anil Cutinha and Clement Saldanha were the show-stoppers of the evening with her rib-tickling comedy that had crowd laughing their hearts out.
The evening came to an end with the traditional sumptuous Novem Jevann. The sumptuous food tickling the taste buds of the gathering was specially prepared by Mangalore Darbar hotels for the occasion.
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