Published: Sunday, June 2, 2013

All for the love of poetry

Recitation with dance at Chhayanaut

Munmun Ahmed (C) performs to recitation by Fakhrul Islam Tara (L) and Dr. Mahbubur Rahman Chowdhury (2-L).  Photo: ATL Aakash

Munmun Ahmed (C) performs to recitation by Fakhrul Islam Tara (L) and Dr. Mahbubur Rahman Chowdhury (2-L). Photo: ATL Aakash

The English romantic poet Wordsworth once famously said, “Poetry is the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings; it takes its origin from emotions recollected in tranquility.” These two statements seem contradictory, but Wordsworth’s theory of poetry involved the fusion of the two statements. In a sense, powerful feelings and profound thoughts make poetry perfect. Wordsworth’s view was that the poet can’t rely on sensibilities alone. He has to be a person who has also thought long and deeply. Once that happens, a calm mind is equally necessary to recall past emotions.

No matter what the statements suggest, poetry — being the essence of any literature — follows no time, space and conventional boundaries. Enjoying poetry soothes our hearts; refines our sensibilities and rejuvenates our nostalgia.

On a rain-drenched evening on May 31, poetry-lovers gathered at Chhayanaut auditorium where elocutionists Dr. Mahbubur Rahman Chowdhury and Fakhrul Islam Tara recited an array of Bangla poems along with presentation of visual poetry by dance diva Munmun Ahmed. The event was titled “Troyee”. The charm of beautiful offerings of recitation and dance jugalbandi was augmented with instrumental recitals by sitarist Firoz Khan, flautist Monirul Islam, violinist Alauddin Mian, and tabla artiste Zakir Hossain.

The elocutionist duo set off the event with a joint performance of a Tagore masterpiece “Antor Momo” and wrapped up with the duet performance of a Kazi Nazrul poem “Bangladesh”. Presentation of love, melancholy, conscience, tradition, history, heritage, satire and of course the patriotic passion and spirit also made an appearance through recitations of several Bangla poems including “Tomar Bondhon”, “Bodhon”, “Ami Kingbodontir Kotha Bolchi”, “Ami Kono Agontuk Noi”, “Matribhumi, Ki Jeno Tomar Naam Chhilo?”, “Kichhui Nijossho Noy” and “Matribhumir Jonno” composed by Poets Nirmalendu Goon, Sukanto Bhattacharya, Abu Zafar Obaidullah, Ahsan Habib, Tarik Sujat, Abu Hena Mustafa Kamal and Srijan Sen respectively.

With posture and mudra, Munmun Ahmed portrayed off and on the heart and grace of poems. Visual presentations of nature photography, images of Bangabandhu’s historic March 7 speech and several sculptures on the Liberation War and paintings by the masters including Quamrul Hassan, SM Sultan and Shabuddin Ahmed came along with the performance of poems.

Dr. Mahbubur Rahman Chowdhury, an eye-specialist by profession, poured precise emotion into reciting the excerpts “Je Kobita Shuntey Janey Na, Shey Diganter Adhikar Thekey Bonchito Hobey” (Ami Kingbodontir Kotha Bolchi). Munmun Ahmed superbly danced to Fakhrul Islam Tara’s offerings as well. The resonance of Raga Khamaj on sitar together with a melody of Raga Bageshree on flute kept the entire presentation lively throughout.

Prior to the performance, a recitation album titled “Tomar Bondhon” was launched at the venue. Dr. Mahbubur Rahman Chowdhury recorded 16 poems composed by Rabindranath Tagore, Kazi Nazrul Islam, Jibananda Das, Mahadev Saha, Helal Hafiz, Sunil Gangopadhyay, Rudra Muhammad Shahidullah and others. President of Bangladesh Abritti Samannay Parishad Asaduzzaman Noor, MP and CEO of SATV Syed Salahuddin Zaki unveiled the album. The guest duo also spoke at the event.