Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home |Volume 5, Issue 48, Tuesday, December 07, 2010



Special feature

Holud hungama

The Hindi songs to dance to are very two years ago. Now, we have a wide variety of rhythmic wedding music in Bangla! Love songs, wedding songs, and so much more to dance to.

I can see my sister getting cold feet while the women in the parlour are doing her make up and she's fidgeting on the seat. On the evening of her holud, she looks at me with scared eyes expecting me to give her some words of advice. On the contrary, I'm sitting next to her with a big grin on my face just waiting to step in and start dancing! Yes, all I can think about is the big holud hungama!

Of course, the wedding is the most important part of any bride or groom's life. Beginning from their clothing, to jewellery, to accepting the fact that they're about to start a new life altogether, there's so much for them to be worried about. As for the siblings and cousins, their main worry and excitement lies solely in the holud. Their thoughts are mostly about what songs to pick, how to choreograph the dances, which of their best friends are going to perform, how many songs to dance to, what to wear for the dances and so on and so forth.

Justified enough, the holud counts for a lot more than just putting on some turmeric on the bride and groom's faces in order to make them look perfect for the wedding. The holud…is a war! It is a war between the youngsters of both households. It's a competition to see which house emerges victorious in terms of presenting the most entertaining show. This includes clothing, decorations, dalas, the dances and the music. The more fun the guests have at your side's holud, the surer you are that yours is definitely better!

Now, to make sure the guests have the kind of fun you want, there are a lot of tricks you can call upon. Just dancing to some random music won't work. Nowadays, most children seem to choose any kind of fast Hindi music to make sure their dances are rhythmic. They forget that the more wedding related the songs are, the cuter and more fun the dances look. Since it's a holud, it already has a theme and it's the most fun theme to work with.

Dancing solely to Hindi songs is very two yeas ago. Now, we have a wide variety of rhythmic wedding music in Bangla! Love songs, wedding songs, and so much more to dance to. Yes, you can use one or two Hindi songs to brighten things up a notch, but it's best to stay as traditional as possible.

Traditional holuds are back…and back with a bang! 'Amar gorur gari te bou shajiye' gives you the perfect scenario of a cute couple about to be wed. Absolutely ideal to dance to at a holud! There are songs like 'Jadu', 'Panjabiwala', 'Dola de' and so many other tracks by Mila and Habib that are easy to dance to and bring that certain perk to holud dances.

Sometimes, randomising some sweet love songs can do the trick. And putting on a little skit works like a charm. Acting out the love story of the bride and groom with songs that suit the situation can be enough to bring a smile to the guests' faces.

You should always remember, the more you enjoy, the more the entertainment for the audience. So, the one thing you should always keep in mind is that you have to let loose and have as much fun as possible.

So, as I sat there grinning like an idiot, I said to my sister, 'Don't you worry, once you see us dancing…you'll forget all you inhibitions'. And she knew it was true, even she was starting to get hyped about it all, hyped about the long awaited 'holud hungama!’

By Naziba Basher
Photo courtesy: Wedding Diary by Prito Reza


A green wedding

A green wedding is an Eco-chic wedding that is also elegant and classy. Most couples who wish to get married the green way do not want to sacrifice beauty and elegance. After all, this is the most important day in their lives and they want it to be as memorable as possible. If you are thinking of having this kind of wedding, let this guide enlighten you on how to have a smashing green wedding that your guests will love.

Holding the wedding outdoors is one of the best ways to have an eco-chic wedding. Not only do you get to bask in the wonderful warmth of the sun and enjoy the light cool breeze of the wind, you also get to reduce energy consumption. Of course, you need to hold the wedding at daytime so that you do not need to use lighting for the event. City parks with proper Rajuk permission, gardens, nature preserves and beaches are some of the ideal choices to consider.

Now, if you really want to have a romantic evening wedding, just see to it that you use soy candles, which burn cleaner and longer than traditional wax candles. Candles help reduce the use of electricity and at the same time, create a romantic atmosphere for this special occasion. Also, it is advisable to hold the ceremony and reception at the same place to reduce fuel consumption.

Minimise paper waste by sending out save-the-date emails. Use 100 percent recycled paper for the invitation. Also, do not use too many paper pieces for the invitation. A one- or two-card invitation is more than enough to contain important details about the event.

Wedding dress
Wear your mother's wedding sari or your mother-in-law's; similarly for the jewellery and accessories, you can do the same thing or you can opt for your mother's or grandmother's or your in-laws' heirloom jewellery sets. First of all gold prices are sky-rocketing every day, traditional jewellery is more trendy now and their designs and stones are priceless compared to contemporary ones.

Exchange rings made of environment-conscious precious metals such as recycled gold or platinum.

Opt for make up that uses natural and organic ingredients and those that do not conduct testing on animals.

Buy flowers for bouquets or decoration from organic farms (although these might be hard to locate). Organic farms make use of local and seasonal wildflowers and organic ways in growing these flowers.

It is the same thing for the food. Hire caterers that will serve local and organically raised meat, vegetables, and fruits for the buffet or sit-down meal.

Stunning favours for an eco-chic green wedding include mini flowerpots, potted topiaries, flower packet seeds, recycled bags, soy candles, and organic soaps.

Having a green wedding does not mean you should sacrifice beauty and class. With eco-chic weddings being all the rage these days, you can have a beautiful environmentally friendly wedding that you and your future spouse will both enjoy.

- LS Desk

Special Feature

Wedding entertainment

How often have you been to a wedding that had no spice to it? Quite often, I believe. Just the typical food, a little music, plastic smiles, a few handshakes, some awkward hugs and even more plastic smiles - and that's it, you are on your way back home.

But the trend is changing these days. A wedding is perhaps the most important event in a person's life. It's definitely the most exciting and thrilling turning point. As such, it's only natural to want to make it as much fun as possible to spread the happiness not just to a few close ones but to all your guests. Keeping your company entertained, however, is no easy business.

Here are a few suggestions to help you out.

Music and lyrics!
Perhaps this is the most obvious form of entertainment you could possibly think of. So let's start with that.

What can possibly be more beautiful than a traditional wedding, and what can possibly be more traditional than having folk musicians singing at the holud to the soul-serenading music of the ektara, dotara, and the dhol? Also, young, inspiring talents in the likes of Arnob and others, have come up with innovative versions of classic Lalon numbers that will capture the hearts of their listeners, and playing this music in the background will make any wedding event one to remember.

Another option is hiring a stage singer, or a band. Whether you go for classic folk singers or a band, nothing is more entertaining than a live performance.

Or, if you think you can handle it, try performing karaoke at the mehendi night. Your guests can sing along with the pre-recorded instrumental versions of songs, with the lyrics displayed on a screen with the music. Although karaoke is not yet as popular in our country, it is nevertheless a good idea to consider if it suits your guests' tastes.

You can always have some music playing in the background if you don't want to go through all the hassles. And, you have a wide array of music to choose from. At weddings, the shehnai is always befitting. Therefore, get hold of a couple of albums. Also, get an album or two of Buddha Bar and Nitin Sawhney. Of course, you won't find all the tracks to go with the wedding theme, but you will surely want to add in a few of these to set a unique tone to your wedding.

Also consider adding some Bengali music. The more recent songs produced by the younger generation of musicians have gained tremendous popularity.

Hindi songs are also extremely popular in our Bangladeshi weddings. Thus, respecting the demand, you should put on some Bollywood songs too!

Shall we dance?
Dancing on a mehendi raat or at a gaye-holud is fun indeed. See to it that your guests cannot get enough of it. Plan a few dances with your friends and close relatives. And make sure you do a good job at it! Rehearse at least for a week in advance. Otherwise you might end up embarrassing yourself in front of an audience.

Singing and dancing is not the end of your options. If you want your holud to be a memorable one for all your guests, you've got to run the extra mile. Hire a stand-up comedian. An hour of laughing will do your guests some good. You can also consider hiring a magician, especially if you are expecting a lot of children. And, speaking of keeping the children entertained, consider arranging a puppet show for about twenty minutes.

Prepare some parody songs. In order to take this one step further, you can prepare a stage drama, mocking some close relatives and friends. But this of course, is for the holud.

Guess the bride!
Choose some interesting wedding games from the Internet. My favourite one is 'Guess the Bride'. Blindfold the bridegroom and challenge him to guess his bride. Ask some friends to touch the bridegroom's hands, whilst he has the challenge to identify his spouse. The game can be more fun if none of the hands are the bride's! This is perfect for post wedding affairs when the groom comes to visit the in-laws.

Here comes the bridegroom!
This is one of the most exciting moments of the wedding ceremony. Your key aim at that time should be this: celebration! Hire a band party. Have people hooting and shouting. To add to that, try igniting some beautiful fireworks.

Now that was from the bridegroom's side. But the opposite party has an even more exciting job! Not letting the bridegroom pass through the gate without paying an agreed amount is a common tradition at our weddings. Add a new flavour to it. Instead of or in addition to charging money, demand that the bridegroom sing a song or recite a poem!

Words and memories
To stir up your guests' emotions high, prepare a slideshow or a video portraying the childhood of the bride/bridegroom. Guide your guests down memory lane. Let a cousin walk through among the audience with a microphone and ask the guests to share their views and opinions abut the bridegroom/bride, or ask them to bless the new couple.

Have some stalls at the corners. On the day of the holud, you can have a henna stall for girls. You can also have a kiosk for fuchkaa, chotpoti, and pitha which have proved rather popular in the city's recent weddings. Another interesting idea is to bring in a fortune-teller. Make him/her sit in one corner with his parrot and tarot cards. Make sure the stalls are decorated well and go with the overall wedding theme.

The use of Palki as a vehicle is now gone completely; but keep a traditional and beautiful one in your venue. Also, consider giving the bride a ride on it for a couple of minutes, perhaps from the car to the stage.

Wedding photography
Last but not the least, hire a professional wedding photographer. You do want to store all these happy memories forever, and the importance of professional wedding photography should not be underestimated.

By M H Haider
Photo courtesy: Wedding Diary by Prito Reza
Special thanks to Samia and Maisha for sharing their ideas and thoughts.






home | Issues | The Daily Star Home

2010 The Daily Star