ZIYA US SALAM
|What the maestro had to say after the news broke.|
In the finest hour of Indian film music, the Mozart of Madras is smiling. As accolades come in thick and fast, he soaks in the real meaning of becoming the first Indian to win the Golden Globe for the Best Original Score in Danny Boyle’s “Slumdog Millionaire”.
No loud pronouncements, no yelling out after attaining glory. Just a wave of the hand, and a solemn promise that tomorrow will be better, even if today is better than all yesterdays for the Indian film industry.
Really, A.R. Rahman makes it difficult not to like him. He is endearingly simple even at a time when he can afford to brag! But isn’t the ’Slumdog Millionaire’ the best thing to have happened not just to him but to the country and its film industry? Rahman merely says that it is just the first step. “It is just the beginning...I hope that this would happen sooner. I want to do it for my countrymen who all crave for Golden Globe and Oscars.”Cautious as ever
As all music-lovers celebrate, we seem just a shot away from the much-coveted Academy Awards. After Golden Globe, isn’t it realistic to focus on the Oscars? Again Rahman is cautious “The score has won six reputed awards already...It is better to keep the hype on Oscars low since it is a very unpredictable!”
But at least at the Golden Globe night, did he expect the award to come his way considering the film had got rave reviews the world over? “I didn’t want to feel confident because I would have been dejected if they had not given it for the music. But the award has affirmed my faith that music has no barrier.”
And pray what does his first Golden Globe read? “It is just a trophy. There is nothing on it.” Of course, a lot comes with it: pressure of expectations, for instance. “Umm. But I am not looking that far ahead.”
As the ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ team, including director Danny Boyle besides Indian actors Anil Kapoor, Irrfan Khan, Mahesh Manjrekar, Madhur Mittal and Dev Patel prepares for the Oscars, how did the project start for Rahman?Addictive score
How did he prepare for the music score; surely it would have been different from say, “Roja”?
“The award has actually brought back memories of ‘Roja’,” he admits, adding, “I just went by my instincts for ‘Slumdog Millionaire’. This is a score that blurs the line between songs and a score. That is one of the reasons it became very addictive to the viewers.”
He should know. He knew his mind when he dropped out of school after eleventh standard to go to Trinity College of Music. He knew his mind when he played the keyboard for Illaiyaraja. He knew his mind when he decided to cross the barrier of the Vindhyas and give music with equal felicity to Tamil and Hindi films. He knows he is on the threshold of something even bigger! Jai Ho!