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Rendezvous with Simi Garewal – AR Rahman Special 2003 | TV Show
Last Updated : 22-07-2010
Year : 2003
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Rendezvous with Simi Garewal – AR Rahman Special 2003 – Transcript
Aired Time : STAR TV | Sunday 11th May 2003
A. R. Rahman has become a powerful name in the global entertainment industry. The music maestro's critical acclaim for his work in hit London musical Bombay Dreams follows a huge string of successful Bollywood soundtracks, including Rangeela, Dil Se, Taal and more recently Saathiya. The popular television host Simi Garewal had an exclusive one-to-one conversation with A. R. Rahman, which has been split into two parts for her television show. The first part was aired on Sunday 11th May 2003, whilst the second part will be shown the following Sunday. Here are some excerpts from the interview:
When Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber approached you to write a musical for his stage…how did you feel?
"The first thing that came to my mind was whether it was true or not. When I asked Lord Webber what kind of music does he listen to, he said that all of our Bollywood songs. When I went to London that's the time I realised his liking for all the songs played here in Bollywood and for the first time as a composer he produced some one else's work".
You have gone where no Indian has gone before and have made that leap from Chennai to Broadway. Do you ever pause and look back at the journey?
"The moment I look back, it just kind of halts you".
Do you remember clearly that little boy from Chennai who grew up a little before time?
"Yes, and when I look back at the time when I started, I think God and destiny have played the main factors in my life".
You were Dilip Shekhar at that time, what was Dilip like?
"Almost similar, but more complex".
Your father was a music composer and an arranger…so you learned music at a young age?
"Yes, my father taught me the basics and then at the age of four I remember accompanying him to the studios".
When your father was very ill, did you realise what was happening?
"It was a complex situation. I still feel it was a mystery as my father was almost fine, but a week after that he died".
Your mother must have gone through a terrible time?
"Yes, with four children, it was a struggle in those circumstances".
Having to take on responsibility at the young age of ten with the burden of the entire family, what does it tutor a young boy?
"It kind of shapes you up and makes you strong".
Were you ever a carefree child?
"No, too many questions about the future, what would happen about my family".
Did you believe in yourself and know that you have the talent?
"No, until Roja happened, I didn't think it was in me and realised there was more to it when I recorded my first song Choti Si Asha…from Roja".
And you became a phenomenon?
"I think Taal kind of set the standard".
Initially you were very shy until Vande Mataram…
"The main thing was to do something young. So the first thing that came was Ma Tujhe Salaam. I could see the joy in people, during my live performances, here and abroad in the US".
What gives you joy?
"When you are doing music, one is immersed. Joy or sorrow, both, gets lost in it. But joy for me is a reflection, of seeing it in other people".
Does appreciation count a lot to you?
"It does count when you don't get it".
Where do you want to reach?
"I never think about that. Things are quiet unpredictable in life. I would rather say that I am like a boat in a river and goes wherever the breeze of God takes it".
Tell me has your success healed the insecurities of your childhood?
"In fact more than what I deserved".

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