Monday, June 1, 2009

M.Boyer…..the legend lives on

M.Boyer…..the legend lives on

●Tomazinho Cardozo

If there was one dramatist who dared to experiment with innovations on the Konkani stage besides delivering stellar performances in innumerable tiatrs and lending his distinct voice to thousands of timeless songs (kantaram), it was M Boyer.

Considered to be a living legend of the tiatr movement, the 78 year old M Boyer, born on October 11, 1930 and christened Manuel Aguiar, took an avid interest in acting and singing right from his childhood. However, his parents, not too keen on seeing their son grow up to be a performer, tried to discourage him from pursuing his passion.

But, despite all their attempts, Aguiar never gave up his love for the stage. He was a determined young man and continued to pursue his dream under the pseudonym, M. Boyer.

Although he didn’t possess a very melodious voice, it was M Boyer’s lyrics and signature style of singing that left several audiences spellbound and placed him among the most sought after singers of Konkani stage. In fact, it was very rare for him to leave the stage sans a thundering applause from his audiences and pleas for an encore performance.

That M Boyer was a gifted performer was manifested by his ability to mesmerize audiences through his extempore composition of lyrics on stage, laced with wit and sarcasm. While his songs mostly addressed issues related to the decline of good values in society, they also criticized the misdeeds of tainted politicians and leaders.

This multi-faceted personality will also be remembered as one of the finest script writers of the Konkani stage. He penned many tiatrs, some of which are timeless. Dramas such as “Bhurgim ani Bhangar”, “Adim tem Atam Hem”, “Kazari Put Xezari”, “Sonvsar Sudorlo”, “Ghor Dukhi Ganv Suki” and “Chintnam Zalim Sopnam” find a place among his most memorable works.

But, the one tiatr which created history was “Ekuch Rosto”. It was penned by M Boyer and was based on communal harmony shared between the two major communities of Goa.

M Boyer’s contribution to tiatrs and kantaram is invaluable. Because of his huge role in enriching and preserving Goan culture and traditions, the Sangeet Natak Academy in New Delhi – the highest cultural institution of India – honoured him with the Sangeet Natak Academy Award. Incidentally, M Boyer is the only Goan artiste to receive this prestigious award.

The government of India also took note of his great contribution to Goan culture and bestowed him with the prestigious Padmashri. M Boyer will, therefore, go down in history as the only cultural artist from Goa to have received both, the Sangeet Natak Academy Award and the Padmashri.

Apart from his unforgettable contributions to tiatrs, M Boyer lobbied for the preservation fo Goan identity. He believed that the Konkani language alone could strengthen the foundations of Goan identity. To support his cause, he participated in all movements and agitations which were organized to preserve the state and its identity. He used the Konkani stage and his songs to arouse feelings of solidarity in the Goan people. He also succeeded to a great extent in his attempt to convince the people of the importance of Konkani to the Goan identity.

M Boyer was an institution by himself. His unwavering dedication to the Konkani stage was exemplary and led to him securing the highest position in the tiatr fraternity.

Tomazinho Cardozo
Candolim, Goa

Note: This Article was published on Times of India (Goa Edition) on 31/05/09

- As forwarded to Gaspar Almeida, Moderator
Gulf-Goans e-Newsletter on 1/6/2009

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A big e-welcome to you. Tumcam Maie-mogacho ieukar. Enjoy Life - This is not a rehearsal! Konkani uloi, boroi, vach ani samball - sodankal. Hich Goenchi osmitai ani amchem khalxelponn. Goenchi amchi Konkani bhas! Ekvottachem saddon Goenkaranchem. This is Gaspar Almeida from Parra, Bardez, Goa, based in Kuwait and am connected with the website created by Ulysses Menezes, and as Moderator of the famous first of its kind Gulf-Goans e-Newsletter (since 1994) and The Goan Forum and several Goan and Indian associations and forums and e-forums in Goa, India, Kuwait, The Middle East and worldwide.