Opera is one of the oldest forms of musical expression. Though its popularity has dwindled over the years, it commands a niche following.
On 4th of December 2019, India’s only Opera theatre, Royal Opera House Mumbai, paid a tribute to the legendary opera singer and voice coach Celia Lobo. Along with Celia’s students, her daughter Deirdre Lobo’s students showcased their vocal talent in a tribute to the living legend.
The curtain raiser for the night was a rendition of ‘Mary’s boy child’ by Deirdre. Other than this perfect start to the night, Deirdre also performed a number of Christmas carols along with Clynton Fernandes, a Guitarist and Nadine Crasto, a pianist.
The concert was followed by a lovely Hindustani Classical song “Kaahe Badariya” with Esho Shyamolo Shundawro” sung by Rajoshi Vidyarthi, a renowned face on stage and screen along with Mukesh Choudhry, pianist. ‘Over the Rainbow’ a ballad composed by Harold Arlen and lyricist Yip Harburg which was sung by Judy Garland for the film “The Wizard of Oz” was beautifully sung and depicted by Suneeta Rao with Nadine Crasto on the piano.
Joseph Gomes packed in a powerful rendition of ‘Di Provenza’, originally sung by Giorgio Zancanaro and composed by Giuseppe Verdi.
Reina Kapur, a young and extremely talented singer did a phenomenal job with the song ‘Tomorrow.’
While Pia Sutaria had the audience feeling a little let down with her take of ‘What a wonderful world’, Dhawal Chandawadkar received a standing ovation for his outstanding performance for the song “Kab Tak Yuhi Rulaegi” alongside Amruta Thakurdesai on the piano.
The versatile diva Shweta Shetty charmed the crowd with her soul-stirring voice and grace on the song ‘Somewhere’. She returned to regale the audience with ‘Evergreen’ post the break.
The stand out performances of the night were by Chevan De Souza Lobo and Chelsea Das. Chevan’s rendition of the melancholic ‘Christmas Shoes’ left a few with teary eyes and Chelsea got most in the gallery tapping their feet to ‘Don’t rain on my parade.’
The other performances of the night were by Chevon De Souza Lobo with “Via Dolorosa”, I still believe in love by Suneeta Rao, O Mio Babbino Caro by Deirdre Lobo, I Could Have Danced All Night by Anusha Goda, Besame Mucho with a Twist by Deirdre Lobo and Dhawal Chandawadkar, ‘I Dreamed A Dream’ a Duet by Deirdre Lobo and Pia Sutaria, Benaam Khwaayishen by Dnyaneshwari Katkar, O Sole Mio by Clynton Fernandes, Once Upon A December by Anusha Goda, Ave Maria by Deirdre, O Danny Boy by Joseph Gomes, A Piece Of Sky by Elizabeth Dias, O Holy Night by Deirdre and Clynton Fernandes. The finale was a fabulous cover of ‘E Susanna Non View……Dove Sono’ by Deirdre.
The event ended with a standing ovation to Celia Lobo and all her former students and her daughter thanking her to making them what they are today.