Monday, November 9, 2009

Kuwait Goan Stars to perform at Qatar

Kuwait Goan Stars to perform at Qatar

By Gasper Crasto

Kuwait November 8, 2009: Kuwait's young music maestro Shahu Almeida will provide live music at the annual mega Konkani musical show at Doha Qatar organized by the Goan Cultural Group.

The unique style musical to be held at Gulf Cinema, Doha, will present celebrated singers from Goa such as Xavier Gomes, Francis de Tuvem, Marcus Vaz, Lawry Travasso, Mario Menezes, Rosy Alvares, etc. Topmost comedians of the Konkani stage Ben Evangelisto, Sally and Joanna are also invited to add spice to the night.

The highlight of the show is going to be a 'creative' opening chorus, according to the organizers Mr. Maurice Pereira and Paul Fernandes of the Goan Cultural Group.

Kuwait's trio singers Mario de Majorda, Cajetan de Sanvordem and Michael D'Silva will add color to the evening with their memorable hits.

Cajetan Pereira - a flamboyant singer

Kala Academy Award winner for Best Actor and Konkani Bhasha Mandal's Best Singer Award winner Cajetan Pereira is popularly known as Cajetan de Sanvordem.

Born to Jose Salvador and Maria Magdalena Pereira at Sanvordem-Goa, Cajetan first came into spotlight when he was just 8 years of age whilst singing in school and village dramas.

Besides acting and singing Cajetan is a public figure in social activities. Time and again, he has been elected to several Indian organizations. He is the President of United Friends Club – a football association and the Ex-President of Kuwait-Goa Tiatristanchi Sonstha (KGTS). He is also the President of Guardian Angel Club of Sanvordem (Kuwait), Head of Cultural Cell of Goan Welfare Society (GWS) since inception, and an active member of Kuwait Indian Football Federation (KIFF).

Apart from being a flamboyant actor, Cajetan is also a versatile compere. His voice, diction, flair and linguistic abilities, especially with his mother-tongue Konkani makes his presence felt vibrantly at Goan cultural programs and social gatherings. He is also good in penning slogans in Konkani. Cajetan's cursive 'handwriting' skill should be seen to be believed and his sense of humor heard to understand the simplicity of life.

Stage great Mario de Majorda

Mario Fernandes, popularly known as Mario de Majorda is one of the established stalwarts of Konkani Stage.

Mario started as a singer at a young age of 13 in 'Somdir ani Lharam' of Felly Lucas and later sang in Jeoffrey de Majorda's 'To Monis Konn'.

Born to Antonette Severina Fernandes and John Fernandes, Mario comes from the beautiful coastal village of Calata-Majorda, Goa. He came to Kuwait in 1983 and has been active ever since on stage and other activities. Initially, Mario was able to pursue his great enthusiasm for acting by helping out in the Holy Family Cathedral's Parents Day programs wherein he used to write, direct, act, compose and also sing songs. He is currently the In-charge of the choir. His presence and works in Kuwait-Goa Tiatristhanchi Sonvstha (KGTS) and Goan Welfare Society (GWS) are hugely noticeable among the Indian community.

Michael D'Silva – one of Kuwait's most popular singer

Michael D'Silva has been performing on stage in Kuwait since 1994. Known for his poetical composing, Michael first sang in Mario de Majorda's drama 'Sambau'.

Maestro Shahu - A shining star across the shores

Amongst the contemporary big names of musicians, the name of Francis Almeida, popularly known as Shahu shines amongst the stellar bracket of Goa's top-notch musicians with his indispensable contribution towards the art.

Shahu may be recognized more in the genre of dramas. But behind his simplicity, is the unmistakable halo of his talent as a star musician of Goan bands. With his past penchant and passion for innovative, brilliant music, Shahu continues on what he loves to do best - hypnotize his listeners to a magical sway.


In his latest performance, Shahu captivated the audience at the Kuwait Goa Tiatristhanchi Sonvstha (KGTS) Konkani musical entitled 'Tiatristponn Devachem Dennem' held recently at Hawally AC Auditorium. He led a group of musicians orchestrating on his favorite keyboards as well as the saxophone.

With his ability to play different instruments, Shahu also leads a band in Kuwait called 2..S#arp.

With 2..S#arp, Shahu's music spans a broad range of harmonies, from Goan and foreign-inspired music to more modern trends with mixtures of genres and ethnic elements. The group is quite popular among Goans, they have even played alongside Goa's topmost band Forefront and many other local bands.

Few however know that Shahu, a dynamic talent with his keyboard, began his tryst with music drumming his way into the hearts of his school-mates at his school's Annual Gatherings, propelling him into the musical horizon forever. He is the alumnus of St. Francis Xavier H. School Macazana and Guardian Angel College, Sanvordem.

Evolving into an ace drummer, he had the rare and splendid opportunity of honing his musical skills under the baton of Chris Perry, the eternal icon and consummate genius of Goan music and playing alongside his son Errol Perry. With music flowing in his veins, his drum beats reverberated in many well-known Goan bands of the nineties such as 'Ultimate', 'Magic Touch', 'The News', 'Human Status', 'Black Lace', etc, to name a few. Shahu disclosed that he played in over 1000 weddings as a drummer with these groups.

But it was his evolution into a keyboardist that shot him into instant fame. Interestingly, Shahu switched over to the keyboards not on his own volition but at the suggestion of Fr. Livio D'Mello under whose cudgel he played for the choir at St. Francis Xavier's church, Macasana. From then on there was no looking back.

Shahu has indeed come a long way with his association with music spanning over a decade. His musical creativity was elevated further after his arrival in Kuwait in October 1999. He began with a bang in Kuwait-based director Jose Rod's unmatched Broadway hit 'Tujem Nanv Vhodd zaum' which was staged all over the Middle East and back home in Goa.

Shahu has also played in Muscat, Doha, Bahrain, Bangalore, Darjeeling, etc, and performed for top directors such as Prem Kumar, Roseferns, Jacob, Menino de Bandar, Pascoal Rodrigues, C.D. Silva, John D' Silva, Ben Evangelist, Rosario Rodrigues, etc, apart from all the directors in Kuwait. He also did a short musical stint playing live music at Dubai's famous Viva Goa hotel.

Shahu's most challenging one-man performance was in Mini Mario's 'Kiteak Ho Bazar Cholta?' staged in Kuwait in 2007. "I had to pick-up the notes on the troupe's arrival on the morning of the show and I can proudly say that I played to perfection without proper rehearsals," says Shahu, adding further, "with musical notes handy, I can play non stop music for over 8 hours.

The young maestro can be aptly described as a consummate artist with an alluring passion and drive for music. Undoubtedly his heart thumps 'musical' beats, for when it comes to music he is simply indefatigable, endowed with an amazing genius -- coupled with a prodigious memory for music.

Shahu reached the highpoint of his career when he was roped in as the music composer by the doyen of Konkani stage, the legendary Rosario Rodrigues wherein his captivating rhythm set aflame many of the unforgettable hits like 'Hanv Kallukant Sandlim' where Shahu pioneered the unique 'one man band' concept providing the entire spectrum of music on a single keyboard! Under the ace director's able tutelage Shahu had a free rein toying with refreshing, innovative ideas which enabled him to break new grounds by pushing hard the frontiers of Goan music.

With sky being the limit, Shahu went on to produce innumerable chart busting scores for numerous hit dramas and musicals which gained him popularity of a household name.

Music apart, Shahu is an intensely endearing and an adorable human being who attaches great value to friendships and family ties. Blessed with a wonderful wife (Clemmie) and a cherubic son named Aerosmith, and daughter Acasia, Shahu is a devoted husband, a doting father and a dutiful son.

Sensitive and devout to the core, Shahu plays for the Holy Family Cathedral Church choir (Kuwait) for the 8.00 a.m mass every Friday since 1999. Time and experience have greatly enriched his remarkable musical abilities and today Shahu continues to add increasing complexity and refinement to his astounding gift of music which is sure to hold the audience in a thrall for years to come!

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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.