January 28, 2013
From the Editor's desk:-
Dear Do..Re..Me..Fa.. Music lovers,
Once again it’s my unique privilege to present the first chord of this New Year 2013 to the valued browzers of ‘daijiworld.com’. After having a wonderful and quite memorable Christmas & New Year celebrations here in Canada, I am back again with the New Year’s first chord. First of all, let me take this opportunity to wish you and your family a happy, prosperous, healthy and blessed New Year-2013. May heavenly blessings be upon you throughout this year and I am fully confident that you will support me this year too as you did in the previous years with your great encouragement. In return, I will try my level best to live up to your expectations by presenting exciting and melodious chords of Konkani music.
In this great month of January, this esteemed web portal ‘daijiworld.com’ has successfully completed twelve glorious years. I take this occasion, to congratulate and thank its mentor Walter D’Souza, Nandalike for his great sacrifice, dedication and determination in bringing this wonderful portal to its current level. I also appreciate and thank the talented and efficient support team for their stupendous service with an exemplary dedication.
During this Christmas break I was busy hunting for a super star to present to you guys as a New Year gift. Amidst the galaxies of shining stars there I found a magnificent star, who is quite a sensation. She started her career as a Konkani singer, entertained thousands of fans through her live singing shows and recently she invaded Bollywood arena. The super star whom I am presenting to you today is none other than ‘The Bright Twinkling Star’ our own Ester Noronha. Truly it’s my dream to watch her live show here in Canada in the near future!
I wish to extend my wholehearted thanks to Florine Roche for all her efforts and unassuming sacrifice in bringing this Super-Star Ester for Do..Re..Me..Fa..
As you continue listening to this heart-throb chord of Konkani music, once again, dear music lover, I thank you for your interest and great support. I shall see you next month with another melodious music chord. Until then bye!
Ester – The Bright Twinkling Star
It is said that prodigiousness often manifests in athletics, mathematics, chess and music. Mangalorean singer-performer Ester Noronha had emerged on the Konkani music scene as a child prodigy at a tender age of 9 raising hopes of millions with her singing talent and brilliance. She lived up to that expectation unlike most child prodigies who wither under the weight of being a child prodigy. Now, this 21 year old Mangalorean singer-performer, musician and actor, has not only lived up to the potential she displayed at a young age but also has gone beyond the expectations of even those who chided her for being over ambitious. If grit, character, effort and social intelligence are some of the important measures of success, there is no wonder that Ester fits the bill perfectly. She has scripted her own success through her talent, hard work and steadfastness and it is just the beginning.
Ester – A Dazzling Performer
Ester is a singer, composer, performer, dancer and actor - all rolled into one which amply reflects her persona as a hardworking, multi-talented and upcoming cine artiste. She is a trained Bharatanatyam artiste, trained in Carnatic music, trained in Piano and has been awarded eight grades before she completed 14. She is a multi-lingual singer singing fluently in English, Kannada, Hindi and Konkani and just managing to sing in Tamil and Telugu. She has given an independent stage programme of her music show and has participated in various concerts in India and abroad, brought out her CD at 17 and made her Bollywood debut at 19.
For many it may look more like a dream and not a reality, for a young girl from Mangalore to have such stupendous credentials when she is just out of her teens. Ester is made up of a sterner stuff and hence was able to train simultaneously in multiple streams without getting worn out or wither under pressure. When asked whether she felt it was too much of a burden on her tender shoulders she says “initially I did feel the burden but soon I was able to make it a part of my routine and that is when I started enjoying what I was doing”.
All her hard work in those teen years has paid off as she is shining like a star in Bollywood, something which many young girls like her only aspire for. What makes her achievements extraordinary is that she has done it without having a godfather in Bollywood, which is simply unfathomable for those without a filmy background. She says her training in dance and music has kept her in good stead in the highly competitive field of Bollywood where only the roughest can survive.
Mother – the Guiding Force
Ester was born in Kaup in Udupi but since her father Valerian was working in Bahrain the family lived in Bahrain initially. Ester showed extraordinary interest in listening to music, watching song and dance videos.
Taking into considering Ester’s interest in these extra-curricular activities Ester and her mother decided to shift base to Mangalore to further nurture her talent. In Mangalore Ester got enrolled to St Jerosa School in Jeppu for her studies. Shifting to Mangalore was a wise decision as it enabled Ester to simultaneously pursue her interests in music, dance and piano along with her studies. It also gave her opportunity to announce her arrival in the Konkani music scene by performing in shows of established Konkani singers like late Wilfy Rebimbus, Claude D Souza, Melvyn Peres and Roshan Belman. Konkani’s yodeling king Melwin Peris spotted her talent and gave her a break to sing in his Konkani album “Salakam”. That marked the arrival of this teen sensation in Konkani music and she captured the audience with her delightful voice and magnetic stage presence.
It was Ester’s mother Janet who fuelled her interest in music and Ester considers her mother as her first guru. She spotted her talent and nurtured it by channelizing it in the right trajectory. Ester says “my mother is a good singer and used to sing for me often and I picked up interest in music because of her. My father also had a good collection of songs of different types and listening to them my mind automatically got tuned to music.
Professionally she was trained by Oscar Weltha and Vimala Lobo in Piano and guitar and learnt Carnatic music from Usha Praveen.
Teen Sensation on the Roll
Ester had her Bharatanatyam Arangetrum at 13, Carnatic Vocal Arangetrum at 14 and in the same year she performed her own “Ester Show” which received critical acclaim. In this show Ester sang two songs composed by her and buoyed by the success she was inspired further to come out with her own solo Konkani audio album “Kalzan Thavn” (from the heart) when she was just 19. Even as a teenager she had a bagful of achievements to her credit.
Like all typical Indian parents, initially her father had reservations about her seriously getting into music. “Considering that many youngsters make a flash and then fade away he thought I would not continue my interest in music with the same avidity with which I began. When he realized I was pretty diligent about it he gave his wholehearted consent.
Being ambitious is one of the traits that herald success and it was ambition that propelled the mother-daughter duo to take vital decisions at crucial stages. They decided to move to Mumbai, the city of opportunities. Ester says “I came here with starry eyes to study for 5 years and realize my ambition of becoming an IAS officer. But destiny willed otherwise and during one of the vacations when I was performing in Bangalore Bollywood’s famed choreographer Saroj Khan spotted me’ she recounts. This chance meeting opened the doors of Bollywood to this Mangalorean girl with twinkling eyes and truckloads of ambition. So, by 19, she had made a grand entry into Bollywood and now is creating quite a stir there with her multitudinous talents.
Her association with Saroj Khan meant she learnt Kathak and filmy dance from her and accompanied Saroj to her various shows. She also honed her acting talents by joining Anupam Kher’s acting school. Naturally she invited glances from people who matter in Bollywood and Ester got her first break when she was signed as the leading actor for Vickey Ranawat directed Hindi film “Quyamat Hi Quyamat” opposite Prakash Sagar. She is also acting in another Hindi movie “Mr Money” which is scheduled for release in March 2013. The movie directed by Rikshit Matta is said to be a romantic comedy starring her opposite Krushna Abhishek.
Kannada film “Nihmans” will mark her entry into Sandalwood opposite actor Surya. Ester has also signed movies in Tamil and Telugu and at present she is shooting for Telugu movie “Veyi Abbadhalue” (1000 lies), directed by well known director Teja.
Music - an Integral Part
Ester says that it was music that gave her the initial break and it would continue to be an integral part of her life. But acting has given a new momentum to her career and she does not want to give up the rare opportunity that has come on her way.
She says Konkani music is still close to her heart. She started singing in Konkani shows and even had composed two songs “Dees Budthana” and “Ugdas” which later paved the way for her bring out her solo CD “Kalzan Thavn”.
Recognition has come her way on many occasions. Bishop of Mangalore honoured her on the occasion of her first stage show acknowledging her contribution to charity from that show. She was also honoured by Kannada Sangha, Bahrain and also by World Cultural Convention of Kuwait.
Konkani music lovers still recognize this vivacious singer and many of them still call her as ‘achiko ichiko girl’, the song that brought her recognition. Her other Konkani songs like ‘Alli Milli Girl” and “Koko koko girl” are also quite popular among Konkani music lovers.
What is admirable about Ester is that despite her stupendous achievements she remains down to earth and is easily accessible. She fondly recalls the support and encouragement she received from Konkani music lovers. Though she is the only child, she is not pampered or overprotected. She comes across as a mature girl-woman who has her head firmly on her shoulders.
Her mother Janet is proud and is happy that her efforts in channelizing her daughter’s assorted talents have borne fruit. Though Janet was ambitious and wanted to harness her full potential she says she never foresaw such a bright future for her daughter.
Ester’s achievements speak volumes of the hard work she has put in and now she is reaping rich harvest for all the sweat and efforts she endured during those teenage years. She is now in the final year of BA (political science and psychology) at St Xavier’s College Mumbai and unlike many of our bollywood starlets she is firmly committed to continuing her studies and is aware of the importance of balancing studies along with her career.
It is really music to the ears when she says her goal of becoming an IAS officer remains unaffected despite her life taking a different path from what she had envisaged. Now at 21, Ester says she has no unfulfilled goals. “Education has always been my priority. It still is. I will try to fulfill my dream of answering competitive exams. I haven't suddenly entered the entertainment industry. My life has always been a balance of both education and fine arts and will remain so”, she states.
Ester acknowledges the constant support and backing of her mother Janet and cooperation of her father Valerian, without whose patronage, she would not have been able to achieve so much in a short period of her life.
For the moment Konkani music lovers will have to contend with whatever songs she had released considering her hectic film career and one cannot falter her on that count. One only hopes she fulfils the benevolence she has for Konkani music and continues to enthrall her fans in the days to come.