For the sounds of soil

For the sounds of soil

In the crowd of song and dance reality shows on television, a show with a difference is like a whiff of fresh air. Yes, the USP on which the new reality show Dil Hai Hindustani on Star Plus comes riding is that it is a talent template that is a tad different from run-of-the-mill song- and-dance spectacles.  

What sets it apart is that it ropes in a global cast of contestants from various corners of the world to render Indian music on its stage. It imbues the talent template with a global flavour in the form of contestants from London, Russia, Uzbekistan, Morocco and Brunei, along with our own desi talent.

Among the various highlights of the new show is a strong panel of judges drawn from the fields of film-making and music. Film-maker Karan Johar, rapper Badshah, composer Shekhar Ravjiani and singer Shalmali Kholgade bring in freshness to the panel. It’s so good to see some new faces instead of all the judges being reshuffled between the rash of reality shows.

Coming to the format of the show, it infuses newness to the talent template, not only making its stage a confluence of a firang and desi cast of contestants, but also with other segments of its format. It will be a platform for staging not only solo performances, but also duets and group renditions like choirs, bands etc. While the foreign contestants notch up the exotic quotient of the show, the desi participants bring in the sounds of the soil.

What better than to hear the folksy Bollywood chartbuster ‘Buleya’ rendered in Russian Lucy’s voice, or to have Fakrul of Brunei perform ‘Tum Paas Aaye’ or Nastya from Russia render the devotional ‘Vaishnava Jan To’ so soulfully!

In the initial episodes, home-grown participants Digvijay Singh, with his different voice, and Hretam Mohamad won over the judges and audience with their renditions.

While Digvijay’s soulful voice made Shalmali Kholgade have a lachrymose-triggering moment, Shekhar offered him a song and Karan offered it to be part of his film.

A mother-daughter team from Kolkata, Ankita and Saraswati Bhattacharya, earned praise for their soulful rendition of ‘Teri Mehfil Mein Qismat’. So moved were the judges by the mother’s rendition that Karan Johar was compelled to quip, “You may have had to leave music, but music has not left you!”

What enlivens the Dil Hai Hindustani stage is that not only participants from different nationalities are rubbing shoulders on the show, but it also boasts of varied formats of singing, be it solo singing, duets, choirs, hip-hop items or rap star performances.

To add to the freshness and uniqueness of the show, contestants cut across the age spectrum, with even middle-aged, 50-plus folks showcasing their talent.

Music, it is said, transcends boundaries and cultural barriers. And this show acts as the perfect platform for a cross-continental and cross-cultural musical confluence.

Some accents on this stage may be foreign, but the soul is surely and purely Hindustani!

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