Friday, August 29, 2008

Featured Article in the Newspaper on Nostalgic Tunes from the Silver Screen

Nostalgic Tunes from the Silver Sceen, May 24th, 2008

Pictures from the Amra Kojon Show
Courtesy of Ashish Kirtania

Pictures from the Amra Kojon Show
Courtesy of Erin Smith

Pictures from the Amra Kojon Show
Courtesy of Mridul Choudhury

Pictures from the Amra Kojon Show
Courtesy of Sourav Biswas

Pictures from the Amra Kojon Show
Courtesy of Tapash Barua

Final DVD Test Clip 1
Final DVD Test Clip 2
Courtesy of Mridul Choudhury

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Dear friends:
On behalf of Amra Kojon we thank all performers, volunteers, organizers and sponsors that helped in creating a successful show on May 24th at MIT's Kresge auditorium. We would like to extend our special thanks to all participants that traveled from great distance to be a part of this musical journey. We express our sincere gratitude towards the audience that made our initiative worthwhile. Without the combined effort of all the participants and the audience to support and cheer us on, we would not have been able to make this event a success. Finally special thanks to Bangladesh Student's Association of MIT (MIT-BSA) for hosting this show.


Amra Kojon

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Press Release: Nostalgic Tunes from the Silver Screen

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Rehearsals and Gatherings for the upcoming event-"Rupali Aloye Dhushor Otit" (Nostalgic Tunes from the Silver Screen)

Amra Kojon 13th Rehearsal/BBQ pictures from 5/10/08-5/11/08
Courtesy of Shamim

Amra Kojon 13th Rehearsal pictures from 5/10/08-5/11/08
Courtesy of Mou, Tuhin, Pusha, Atanu

Amra Kojon 13th Rehearsal/BBQ pictures from 5/10/08-5/11/08
Amra Kojon 13th Rehearsal pictures from 5/10/08-5/11/08
Courtesy of Tarique

Amra Kojon Rehearsal pictures from 5/7/08
Courtesy of Himi

Amra Kojon Rehearsal pictures from 5/4/08
Courtesy of Himi

Amra Kojon Rehearsal pictures from 5/2/08
Courtesy of Himi

Amra Kojon Rehearsal pictures from 5/2/08
Courtesy of Faika

Youtube links from Rehearsals

Amra Kojon 10th Rehearsal pictures from 4/19/08
Courtesy of Asif

Amra Kojon 10th Rehearsal pictures from 4/19/08
Courtesy of Shamim

Youtube link of Amra Kojon at BANE event, 4/19/08
Courtesy of Shamik and Bivash

Youtube Noboborsho celebration/rehearsal link from 4/12/08
Courtesy of Mridul

Youtube Noboborsho celebration/rehearsal link from 4/12/08
Courtesy of Shamik and Bivash

Youtube Rehearsal link from 3/29/08
Courtesy of Mridul

Youtube Rehearsal link from 3/9/08
Courtesy of Sarwar

Photos from Archives:

Amra Kojon 12th Rehearsal pictures from 5/3/08-5/4/08
Courtesy of Shamim

Amra Kojon 12th Rehearsal pictures from 5/3/08-5/5/08
Courtesy of Tuhin, Himi and Pusha

Amra Kojon 11th Rehearsal pictures from 4/26/08
Courtesy of Tarique

Amra Kojon 11th Rehearsal pictures from 4/26/08
Courtesy of Shamim

Amra Kojon 11th Rehearsal pictures from 4/26 & 4/27/08
Courtesy of Tuhin

Amra Kojon: Collection of Rehearsal pictures
Courtesy of Himi

Amra Kojon: Collection of Rehearsal pictures
Courtesy of Tuhin, Bivash, Pusha, Himi

Amra Kojon: Collection of pictures
Courtesy of Tarique

Amra Kojon Noboborsho Celebration/Rehearsal pictures from 4/12/08
Courtesy of Tuhin, Atanu, Navid

Amra Kojon Noboborsho Celebration/Rehearsal pictures from 4/12/08
Courtesy of Shamim

Amra Kojon 9th Rehearsal pictures from 4/6/08
Courtesy of Tuhin

Amra Kojon 9th Rehearsal pictures from 4/6/08
Courtesy of Asif

Amra Kojon 9th Rehearsal pictures from 4/6/08
Courtesy of Shamim

Amra Kojon 8th Rehearsal pictures from 3/29/08
Courtesy of of Faika

Amra Kojon 8th Rehearsal pictures from 3/29/08
Courtesy of Sujon, Mou, Faika

Amra Kojon 8th Rehearsal pictures from 3/29/08
Courtesy of Shamim

Amra Kojon 7th Rehearsal pictures from 3/22/08
More Amra Kojon 7th Rehearsal pictures from 3/22/08
Courtesy of Atanu, Audi, Himi, Kashem, Kuheli, Sohel Bhai

Amra Kojon 6th Rehearsal pictures from 3/15/08
Courtesy of Amin

Amra Kojon children's Rehearsal pictures from 3/15/08
Courtesy of Sarwar

Amra Kojon 5th Rehearsal pictures from 03/09/08
Courtesy of Sarwar

Amra Kojon 5th Rehearsal pictures from 03/09/08
Courtesy of Easeen, Pusha, Himi, Audi

Amra Kojon 5th Rehearsal pictures from 03/09/08
Courtesy of Shamim

Amra Kojon 5th Rehearsal pictures from 03/09/08
Courtesy of Sourav

Amra Kojon 4th Rehearsal Pictures from 03/02/08
Courtesy of Shamim

Amra Kojon 4th Rehearsal
Courtesy of Sarwar

Amra Kojon at BANE Ekushe 2008
Courtesy of Easeen

Amra Kojon 3rd Rehearsal Pictures from 02/24/08
Courtesy of Shamim and Easeen

More of Amra Kojon 3rd Rehearsal Pictures from 02/24/08
Courtesy of Amin

Amra Kojon 2nd Rehearsal Pictures from 02/16/08
Courtesy of Audi and Himi

Planning & 1st Rehearsal Pictures from02/09/08
Courtesy of Audi and Himi

Pictures from meeting to share event idea, from 01/06/08
Courtesy of Audi and Himi

MIT-Bangladesh Student Association presents Amra Kojon

Nostalgic Tunes From The Silver Screen, on May 24th, 2008 at MIT's Kresge Auditorium

Friday, February 01, 2008

Amra Kojon Presents: "Rupali Aloye Dhushor Otit"-Nostalgic Tunes from the Silver Screen, on May 24h, 2008 at MIT's Kresge Auditorium

Dear Friends:

Hope this email finds you well and warm in this cold month of January!

We would like to take this opportunity to inform you that Amra Kojon will celebrate its fifth anniversary with the Nobaborsha 1515 show on Saturday, May 24, 2008 at MIT's Kresge auditorium that has a capacity of 1,250.

Please take a few minutes to review some of the details regarding our upcoming event.

It is our pleasure to also inform you that the Bangladeshi Students Association at MIT (MIT-BSA) is our official host for this event just as they had been for our 2003 show. We would like to take this opportunity to extend our special thanks to MIT-BSA for hosting Amra Kojon and for their constant support for the success of the event.

Following the footsteps of our very first event, we would like to mark this fifth anniversary by presenting a show of equal magnitude, if not greater, as indicated by our 2003 event.

Bondhuraa, you would be happy to know that a large number of our performers from the first show that are all around the globe have expressed great enthusiasm in planning to participate in this latest endeavor!

As you may recall from 2003, what started as a dream for a bunch of amateurs to unite through our love of music, turned into majestic event by a sold-out show, international media coverage and music lovers from everywhere wishing us well and eager to join us.

Needless to say, we have grown over the last five years with many new faces joining the Amra Kojon music family. It was not one person, but the combined effort from all of you that has made Amra Kojon into what we are today. Together, we are now stronger than ever before and through true team effort as demonstrated over the years, we can once again accomplish an event we can all be proud of. Every effort that YOU make can thus make a difference and help us get a step closer to repeating history once again!

We really hope all of you can join us in this journey. We would truly appreciate if you could let us know by Friday 1st evening (02/01/08), if you will be interested in getting involved. Sorry for rushing you to make this decision. As you understand, we have already spent a great deal of time in trying to confirm the venue & other logistical issues.

Our script for the show will be based on Bangla movie songs: an Amra kojon presentation of Rupali Aloye Dhushor Otit (Nostalgic Tunes from the Silver Screen). We would make every effort not to compromise on the quality of the show. As a result, your commitment towards rehearsals or other aspects of the show that you would like to participate in is extremely crucial to accomplish a successful event. Friends, please know that we will start all rehearsals ON TIME. Since many of you have indicated having to take time off from work or other plans to be at rehearsals, let us all try to value each other's time and effort.

Here is the rehearsal schedule for the next 4 months. Please find the direction and the parking info as an attached file. Also, please find the attachment of our 1st email from 2002 rehearsal and a photo from our 20003 show, just to refresh our memory!!!!

Rehearsal information:

1st Rehearsal:

02/09/08 Saturday, 2:00pm-6:00pm, Room (W20-306)

Introduction among us, share the script ideas, finalize songs, discuss performer responsibilities and commitments, watch 2003 show, share old movie songs, talk about tickets price, flier distribution, etc.

February: 2 Rehearsals
02/16/08 Saturday, 10:00am-4:00pm, Room (W20-306)
02/24/08 Sunday, 10:00am-4:00pm, Room 491

March: 4 Rehearsals

03/02/08 Sunday, 10:00am- 4:00pm, Room 491
03/15/08 Saturday, 1:00pm-7:00pm, Room (W20-306)
03/22/08 Saturday, 1:00pm-7:00pm, Room (W20-306)
03/29/08 Saturday, 1:00pm- 7:00pm, Room (W20-306)

April: 4 Rehearsals

04/06/08 Sunday, 10:00am-4:00pm, Room 491

04/13/08 to be announced

04/19/08 to be announced
04/27/08 Sunday, 10:00am-4:00pm, Room 491

May: 4 Rehearsals

05/04/08 Sunday, 10:00am- 4:00pm, Room 407, Run-thru rehearsal
05/10/08 Saturday, 1:00pm-7:00pm, Room (W20-306) Run-thru rehearsal
05/17/08 Saturday, 1:00pm-7:00pm, Room 407, Run-thru rehearsal

Final Week:

05/22/08 Thursday, 3:00pm-8:00pm, Dress Rehearsal at Kresge

05/24/08 Saturday, Hoi Hoi kando, Roi roi bepaar…

Rock n Roll time: Rupali Aloye Dhushor Otit

Rehearsal venue:

MIT's Stratton Student Center
84 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139

(Opposite of Kresge hall, in front of main MIT campus)

Rehearsal venues are located within this building.
Room # 407 (4th floor)
Room # 491 (4th floor)
20-Chimneys (3rd floor)

Nearest parking lot is "West Garage", a multi-storied covered parking lot on Vassar St, about 300m from the venue. This is MIT parking lot which is open to people/visitors on weekends. After parking, cross Vassar St, walk throguh/by Z center (W34 and W35), make a left (you will see Kresge in front of you), and the next building on your left is Student Center (W20).

We would also like to plan for our first rehearsal and get together on Saturday, February 9th 2008, as this was the exact date of our first show back in 2003! Even if you cannot participate in our upcoming show, please make all possible effort to join us for this gathering. We will give you an overview of all the planning and script ideas pertaining to the upcoming event.

Friends, those of you that are on facebook, we would request you to please utilize this networking site to spread the word regarding upcoming event! Please contact your family/friends and any music lovers (Bengali/Non-Bengali) you know that may be interested in joining us as a performer/volunteer in this journey.

Bondhuraa, please note that it may not be possible for us to call each person to inform them of any rehearsal cancellations due to winter weather. At the same time, we know some of you do not check your mail in a regular basis. Therefore, in the next few months, in case of chances of inclement weather on the weekends of the rehearsals and gathering, please call at 401-331-5825 for cancellation updates. There will be updated voice recorded message regarding the rehearsal weekly. Also please visit our website regularly at for updates.

Friends, let us make music history once again in this part of the world and make our upcoming event a truly memorable one! It is time for us to "Rock n Roll" again!!!

Thank you for your continuous cooperation with Amra Kojon. We look forward to working with you for our mega-show in May!

Hope to see you all on Saturday, Feb 9th at 2pm at MIT's Student Center.



On behalf of AK music family

Monday, January 14, 2008

currently cooking: Chaayachonda

Dear Friends:

Happy snowy Monday morning.

Hope this email finds you well. We apologize for our late response to the meeting held on Jan 6 th at Woburn's Red Roof Inn, as we have had to dedicate a significant amount of time towards finalizing some of the logistical details for the upcoming show. First of all, we would like to thank all of you for attending the meeting. As a result of your continuous cooperation with Amra Kojon, we had a total of 52 of you that attended the gathering, and we truly appreciate you making the time to accommodate us in your weekend schedule. We would also like to extend our thanks to all the representatives from the various New England organizations for participating in this meeting. As a follow up email, we would like to share some of the final plans for the show, that were decided during the meeting by majority of you.

Here are some of the highlights of the meeting for the next AK show :

1) For our upcoming event, we will attempt to once again match the magnitude of our 2003 show.

2) The tentative plan is to select a date towards April/May, depending upon on the availability of a desired venue.

3) The show will consist of two parts-One being a segment consisting of Bangla film songs (history & research based script) while the other will highlight the folk music used in Bangla film industry.

4) Our selected venue must accommodate more than 800 audience.

5) Ticket price will range between $10-$100.

Currently we have been working on deciding on a venue that can accommodate our large audience and is available during the time of our interest. We have been successful in getting multiple venues, however, those have been too small to hold such a large crowd. We will update you as soon as we make a final decision.

Enjoy the photos from the meeting:

Courtesy of Auditi Guha & Nuzhat Karim Himi.

Once again, we thank you for your presence at the meeting and for your continuous cooperation with Amra Kojon.

Stay warm & drive safely in this bad weather.

Looking forward to see you all soon.


On behalf Amra Kojon

Ps. Performers:

Our Chaayachonda (Rupali Pordaye Dhushar Otit) script is almost ready, once we know the exact date, we will send you the rehearsal schedule with other logistical issues. Please do not make any plans for Saturdays (3-7pm) from February. You may invite your music lover friends to join us as a performer in this mega project. Cheers…..

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

AK's show meeting : Sunday January 6th, 2008

Dear Friends,

You are cordially invited to AK’s planning meeting for the show to be held in April 2008, in celebration for the Amra Kojon 5 th year anniversary, along with "Noboborsho 1415"/Bangla New Year. In an effort to once again imprint our perseverance towards music, our rich culture and strong heritage, we aspire to present a memorable show, similar to our first event showcased on Feb 9th, 2003 (

Friends, your strong dedication towards Amra Kojon, has been the driving force behind its success. As a result, we would ask you to contribute your honest thoughts at this meeting and only take on tasks that would be feasible for you to manage. Friends, please do not feel obligated to commit to more than you can tackle. However, any responsibilities you may choose to undertake, we kindly request you to remain firm on your stance to assist, in order for all of us to plan all the logistics in a more organized fashion.

We look forward to seeing you at the planning meeting.

Date: Sunday, January 6th, 2008

Venue: Red Roof Inn , 19 Commerce Way Woburn, MA 01801

Time: 3:00pm6:00pm

Refreshments will be served.

RSVP MUST: Please RSVP by 31st December 2007.

We do have limited seating arrangements.

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact us at or call me at 401-743-0685.

We wish you a very Happy Holiday season and we look forward to working with you in the upcoming year. Thank you in advance for your continuous support and cooperation with Amra Kojon.

Ps: In case of snow/bad weather...if we cancel the meeting, we will inform you by January 5th.

Friday, July 06, 2007

AK Tallships : Making History

AK just made history in Newport by being the first Bengal performers in the Tallships cultural festival; I'm glad to be one of the lucky people to perform there being an AK member. It was a moving crowd and our audience varied from time to time from around 20 people to hundreds; our second slot was more successful, since it was later on in the day when more people came.

All in all it was a great experience and honor to be and perform with AK; it truly changed various aspects of my life. I want to thank Tallships for the great opportunity they gave us, and the entire AK family including Taps, Swapna mashi, Rahul da, Arjun, Karna, and many more.

It is really an honor and a lot of fun to be with AK.

- Nafiz (a.k.a. Fizz)
on behalf of AK

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Let music fill our hearts... through generations.

Our sons have performed with us many times in the past. But, we can say with certainty that this time they have enjoyed the most. We always wanted to give them music. And, music they have! That is what they live for! Our house is always rocking with music of all sorts.

In their younger days they accompanied us with 'our' vocals. In addition they have played spiritual music on their own (at Rammakrishna Vedanta Society). As a matter of fact Abu (Karna) plays cello at the Boston chapter on a regular basis. However, as they grew older, they became increasingly reluctant to play with us. (However, that is changing lately, and we hear a lot of Indian music being played at home.)

Furthermore, I think that it is difficult for youngsters to play with their parents, because they sort of feel 'traditional', 'old' etc. (I think). It is a mental barrier. This time Fawad was closer to their age (than ours, and even Taposh's), and they made the bonding. In fact they want to play more in our group or outside with Fawad, for example.

I must add that Babu and Abu (Arjun and Karna) were not the only next generation kids performing with their parents. Nila and Paula's daughters and son were there, Samina (Milli's daughter), Ajad's son and duaghter, and Arshi, Tammanaa's daughter. And, of course, Nafiz is an absolute delight. It's funny the way he imitates me (Rahul)! Neepa should be proud of him. (We would very much like Nafiz to get closer to Babu and Abu and make music in or outside AK). We all should be proud of our children performing with us without inhibition.

We must confess that we always wanted our sons to enjoy our music. We mostly do Rabindrasangeets, Nazrul geetis etc. They are slow and somewhat intricate in structure. Furthermore, 'high Bengali' in many Rabindrasangeets is an obstacle for them to comprehend the meaning. But this time, the simple folksy songs of AK, with their simplicity and rythmic structure caught their attention; and they enjoyed it. This is a big achievement for us; and we must thank everyone, particularly Fawad
and Taposh for making that connection to happen!

Let music fill our heart (and our children's heart too)!


Rahul & Swapna

From Tall Ships, RI organizers

AK team: I am usually not at a loss for words and this time the challenge is for me to limit myself to a few heart-felt remarks instead of the pages I could write.

For me the performance by your group, Amra Kojon, embodied the best elements of what the Tall ships festival is all about: learning about the cultures and people who are represented through the visit of ships and their cadets, celebrating life and each other's contributions, and drawing closer together through the medium of dance, song and music. Your group had it all and expressed it with joy and passion!

Betty and I thank you profoundly and so do all those lucky enough to have experienced your performances at Tall Ships Rhode Island 2007.

I certainly plan to stay in touch with you and look forward to seeing you and Amra Kojon again.

Thanks for sending the wonderful photos. We will select some to keep the memories alive.

Elaine Williams, Co-chairman of Tall Ships entertainment with Betty Czech

Monday, July 02, 2007

Audience feedback

Here is some audience feedback

The AK Team

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Tall Ships Festival, Newport RI - June 30, 2007

Here are pictures from the rehearsals on Saturday, June 23 and Sunday, June 24

Pictures of the show

Pictures taken right after the show

To share your experiences, please email

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

TallShips Festival, Newport, RI

Dear Friends,

As some of you may already know, Newport, Rhode Island is hosting a Tall Ships Festival from June 27th through July 1st. The event brings some of the biggest and the most gorgeous ships from all around the globe and encourages a celebration of diversity by presenting music, songs and dance by various cultures, performing on multiple stages at the same time.

The event is expected to attract approximately 250,000 visitors over three days. The international village with tent-pavilions is an added attraction where different groups will be displaying their art, culture, crafts and native items representing the different countries.

Amra Kojon will be performing at the Tall ships event at the State Fishing Pier, (150 Washington Street, Newport, RI 02840) at two different time slots (11:45am and 3:30pm) on Saturday, June 30 with a musical glimpse into a world of bounty and life lived at the edge with their presentation "Songs of Bengal's River and Soil." We will be performing side-by-side with Brazilians, Irish, English, African and many more troupes.

Please join us if you can. It is a great way to spend a bright summer day by the waterfront in one of the prettiest beach towns of New England, celebrating diversity with friends from all around the globe.

Here are some of the links regarding program schedule and transportation.

Here is a press feeler about what it might be like:

Rehearsal Photos from last weekend:

Your presence at the event will make a big difference. Together, we hope to unite the world through this diversity and love of music. Thank you for your continuous support.

The AK Team.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

From Finland

Dear Amra Kojon,

Robithakur bolechilen''Ei porobase robe ke hai¨¨? But sitting here in Finland I really appreciate what you people done together.
And I feel pity that I cant join you from here. Still am overwhelmed to see your performance and your dream.
I am Tapati, living in Finland, Bangladesher meye.
I came to know about you from BD's daily paper ''prothom alo''
I am not an exåert silpi but ganpagol bolte ja bojhai seta.
Gaite pari tuktak bujhteo pari kichu bole mone hoi.

I am really feeling happy to see your dreams.
Me too very much proud of my language ''Bangla'' and of course our country.
From here I cant join with you but at least I can unify myself with your dreams and I inspire all
of you , please go ahead,our dreams will come true.
We will proof one day as a nation we are more potential than these resist public of abroad.
Wish you all the best.

Thanking you


Thursday, May 17, 2007

Thanks to Nandini and Raja ...

Thanks to Nandini and Raja - our buddies across the Atlantic - we now have more pictures of the Amra Kojon in London experience.

Enjoy the pictures!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Behind the scenes....

Often we do not recognize the hard work of behind the scene friends of AK. We were able to succeed in our London tour because of their help.

On behalf of AK, we salute them for their support in completing our London concert.

Abu Kamal Azad, MA

Adnan Syed, NY

Ajay Vinoben, RI

Amlan Bhattachariya, RI

Asif Saleh, London

Atiqul Alam Jhontu, NY

Atiqur Rahman Sujan, MA

Dr. Dulal, MA

Goutam Chakraborty, Bangladesh

Iqbal Quadir, MA

Kabir Ahmed, Germany

Mahdi Imam, MA

Mohammad Hasan, MA

Monzurul Islam, NY

Mr. Britti, MA

Mr. Monju, MA

Mustahid Ahmed, MA

Naina Ahmad, MA

Rezbul Chowdhury Manna, MA

Rosy Singh, RI

Ruhul Abid Lekhan, MA

Shafique Khan Raja, MA

Shaheen Khan, MA

Shumona Haque, Bangladesh

Sohini Alam, London

Sudipta Sarker, MA

Sujan Bin Wadud, NY

Sujan Kabir, MA

Swami Yogatmananda, RI

Sunday, May 13, 2007

A fresh perspective from the inside.


All I have to say, I had a jomano 72 hrs with AK in London.....

It was my 1st time with them and hopefully the beginning of a lot more to come for me, In those 72 hrs i received the prestigious title of "Bandor" from Taposh da and Swapnadi's third son.

I loved how Andaleep bhai, Kash bhai, Shafaq Bhai and I gave a restless 5 hr crash course London tour from 5 am to 10 am.

AK rocks........I love you guys!

- Nafiz Ahmed

Friday, May 11, 2007

Thank you, from us at Amra Kojon

Time for pictures!

For those of you turning blue with anticipation - here are the pictures from the AK London Tour, thanks to Auditi, our resident media rep!

Enjoy, and don't forget to post your comments here on the AK blog. Your participation and comments inject life into the AK blog!

Note from BI

Dearest AK members,

Sorry mates, I have lost all words to praise your greatness and generosity. I am sorry that your kindness and love have overwhelmed me so much that it will take a while for my emotional state of being to be normal agin to deliver what I would like to say in saying "Thank You".

So, please be generous again to hear those words I would love to say to all of you for coming home at BI centre and the good works we did together in the weekend.

All I am able to say at these emotional moment is: " I love you Amra Kojon"!

I look forward to seeing you soon.

With Kindest regards from each one at Bengali International,

- Shams
President, Bengali International

How much would you pay?

Airfare = $577.00

VISA fee = $138.00

Goofed up at the VISA interview and had to pay more for the visa = $400.00

Since VISA did not make on time so had to go the New York Gas = $ 50.00

Park at the wrong spot in new your and the parking ticket =$45.00

2 missing easles =$60.00

Making a trip with the most favorite people of your life,

Staying under the same roof and sleeping on the floor,

Spending sleepless nights so we can have more fun,

Doing the performance of your life,

1st ever international concert,

All lathered up but no water to take shower,

Finally, the standing Ovation……………


- Dewan Kashem, Tuhin
on behalf of Amra Kojon

Thursday, May 10, 2007

AK's note to Drishtipat, London and Bengali International

Dear members of Drishtipat, London, and members of Bengali International,

There are literally no words left to describe the camaderie and warm reception that we've had the good fortune of experiencing with you guys over this past weekend. You've welcomed us into your tight circle of near and dear ones, and even in this short span of less than 3 days, we've bonded. We've bonded over our common love for Bangla gaan, our common passion for the promulgation of the Bangla culture, and our
obstinate refusal to let our individual differences stand in the way of cooperation, tolerance, acceptance and team work.

We are more than just another expatriate organization collaborating with each other:

We share a common vision and a common spirit. We want to be able to transcend the barriers of what makes us different from one another, and we want to be able to learn to value the richness that this very difference brings to our experiences and perspectives. Like you, at Drishtipat and Bengali International, we at Amra Kojon want to demonstrate through example that we can realize large dreams through the collective endeavors and passionate contributions of many. We want to demonstrate that we are a team displaying unparalleled professionalism in our volunteering commitments - achieving results through effective communication, individual ownership and commitment, and by holding our teammates close to our hearts.

We can not thank you enough for inspiring us. Seeing our spirit, and our vision for unity reflected so clearly in your midst reinforces the strength of our convictions.

Together, we can really make a difference. Amra Kojon would like to invite those who share our dreams of unity despite differences to come visit us in Boston this summer. Lets talk, lets party, lets brainstorm. Let us try to extend the hospitality that you've so warmly extended to us!

We really hope that you will seriously consider a Boston trip soon, and help foster this exchange of energy and life!

Thank you. You've made a deep impact on all the Amra Kojon members.

warm regards,

Auditi Guha,
Chetan Kothari,
David Upegui,
Dewan kashem Tuhin,
Fariha Chowdhury,
Fawad Reza,
Joy Alamgir,
Kabir Ahmed(Germany AK Rep),
Lali Basher,
Mohitosh Talukder Taposh,
Nafiz Chowdhury,
Nandini Chowdhury,
Nita Mahalanobish,
Nuzhat Karim Himi,
Pusha karim,
Rahul Ray,
Rezina Chowdhury,
Shafaq Islam,
Sohini Alam (London AK Rep),
Swapna Ray,
Syed Bashar Jami,
Zahid Osmani Mamun

on behalf of Amra Kojon

In front of the hall

All of us:

The women:

and the men:

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

some more quick snapshots to share...

Amra Kojon receives a standing ovation in London

For the first time, a 1500-strong audience at the annual Bengali New Year celebration in Walthamstow Assembly Hall, London, gave a standing ovation to a chorus group from Boston, USA as they wound their way through the crowds singing "Ami Banglay Gaan Gai."

"This is a big deal. You put up a great show. You really touched the audience and this has never happened before at a Bengali show in London," said Shams, president of Bengali International that organized the annual event on May 6.

Amra Kojon was invited to perform at the show this year and presented a medley of folk songs from both Bengals in a performance titled "Gaaner Feriwala" (Musical Nomads) to a packed audience at the London show this weekend, 6 th May, 2007.

Many identified with popular favorites like "Leelabali", "Shajher Belaa" and "Kaandey Hason Raja" and even joined in the final chorus with tears in their eyes.

This was Amra Kojon's first international concert and a dream come true. A dream to sing and celebrate together and their first step to spread Bengali music around the globe.

Amra Kojon literally means "a few of us" in Bangla. A few years ago, a group of music lovers from both Bengals came together in celebration of their motherland and language, beyond the borders of religion, country, politics and local organizations.

The group come a long way since and are proud and honored with their latest venture. For more information, please visit


Priyo Amra Kojon,

Dhonnobad, apnader doler shobaike.

In Sydney I can still re-call our beloved organization 'Amra Ka'jan Mancho sromik'. We work from 1994 to 1996 very well. The organization did not exist because of our various political agenda.

Apnader uddom jeno theme na jai. Bhalo thakun shushto thakun.

Anwar Akash
Bangla Academy Australia

Celebrating Humanity

I am back at work today and have been telling everyone about my experiences in London. I can't thank everyone at Amra Kojon enough for believing that this Colombian could make music with the team.

I had a great time and learned a lot about Bengali culture, music, food, language, and more importantly I learned about myself.

I have come to realize that when examined closely, the Bengali culture celebrates more than the people born to it, it celebrates humanity.

Thank you for letting be part of it all! I am a better person because of you!

Please thank Sohini for the great job she did as our ambassador. She is an oak, strong and resistant!

We'll keep on talking!

- David Upegui, MA
on behalf of Amra Kojon

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

We are all missing you ...

Dear Amra Kojon friends,

You have won us over. We are all thinking about the amazing weekend we just had with you guys. Congratulations on getting done what seemed like impossible a few months ago.

AK will be a known brand in London from here on.

Here is a comment I thought worth passing to you:

Looking forward to the next time we get together again.

- Asif Saleh
to Amra Kojon

Amra Kojon is back from London...

... and I am in a daze.

It has been an unbelievable trip -- from 22 of us on the same flight, meeting Sohini after so long, the amazing hospitality of Bengali International and Shams and adda at Asif Bhai and Eeshita's, to a standing ovation at the show, dinner at B.B. Chowdhury's and a long sleepless gaan-bajna session on Sunday night.
It was hectic - but so much fun!

We met an amazing bunch of enthusiastic, committed folks without whom this trip wouldn't have been worth it. And I hope we remain friends forever, that they too become a part of our Amra Kojon madness around the globe!

At the end of the day, it truly is a dream come true. And perhaps one small step towards our greater dream of taking Bangla gaan around the globe. (And please, can I be allowed my traditional caustic comment here? I stick my tongue out to gloat once again to all those who said it could never be done...nya nya nya nya nya!)

Even a week ago some of us were not sure we could go but it was worth all the headaches, confusion, sleepless nights...

Now, 24 hours later, it seems so surreal that I can't believe it really happened and I can't believe we did it. There cheers to Taps, to AK, to us and mostly to our new friends in London!

- Auditi Guha
on behalf of Amra Kojon

Hope all of you got across to the other side safe and sound!

Apneder kollaney ekta oshadharon weekend'er jonno thanks janatey likhtey boshlam. (This is Zubaer by the way, kala pola with the lal panjabi!) Apneder shob kichhu, pura ayojon shotti khubi mugdho korlo. Onek enjoy korlam, hoi choi gaan bajna hashi tamasha, Asif'er bashae jamming theke shuru korey, gotokal shara raater adda porjonto. Eto bhalo shobai - in both senses - bhishon omayik ebong oshombhob talented! Emon manusher pashey thakleo mon'ta bhalo hoy.

Annu ekta khub bhalo kotha bollo ajke bhor bela on the way back from the hostel - ami sure eita er aageo 100 bar shunsen kintu tao boltey hoy - eto bishudhho Bangali ayojon khub beshi dekhi nai. Khali bhedabhed shikhi amra, eipar bonam oipar, hindu bonam muslim. Amra Kojon'ke dekhlam ekta unit jara shomosto bhedabhed dhongsho korey disey. Ei hanahani ar hingsha'r diney Amra Kojon asholei ekta example shob Bangali'r jonno. Jak, apneder kachhey peye amra khubi anondo pailam, ar ami personally ekdom obhibhuto, apneder bonding, unity, friendship, and commitment to Bengali culture and music dekhey. (Oh aar gaan ja gailen mashallah! Oi niye ar kisu bolar baki rakhlen koi!!)

Apnera bar bar amader eikhane firey ashen, ei asha'i kori :-)

Best wishes,

Amra Kojon Sets its Sail!

After a few weeks of rigorous rehearsal, "Amra Kojon" finally set sail to England as a test run for the world tour. Against many odds, we hoped to take Bangla music all around the globe starting with our first show in London, UK. As soon as we landed in the UK, we were greeted by Sohini and our hosts, while lines of vans waited to take us to the Bengali International Center where we would reside for the next few days. From that point on, we fell into a rigorous routine of rehearsals, dinners, and gatherings that had been chalked out for us. We had to be well disciplined, professional and together we were fierce, and had tireless determination to achieve our goal. At times, with Taposh Da's one call, twenty five of us had to get ready in just a matter of minutes and be out the door! At the end of each day, we came back to the center, exhausted, but excited, as we sat and ate together, chatted, laughed, shared our thoughts, and slept under the same roof like one big happy family.

The day of the show, needless to say, I was excited, yet nervous beyond belief. The moment we had all been waiting for was finally here. For the first time, in a long time, my hands were cold before my performance and I felt the rush, the pressure, and the anxiety seemed overwhelming. When the trumpet started playing to introduce the beginning of our show, the cheering responses from the crowd, reassured us that we already had the audience captivated. When we entered the stage I noticed the entire auditorium being completely packed, with curious faces waiting to see what we had to offer. Standing on the stage at that moment with bright lights shining over us, I looked around and instantly felt so proud and gratified that all my fears just melted away. As we began the show, everything fell right into place and we captured the spirit of the audience. When we received applauds and whistles during the show, I knew we had accomplished what we came here to do. What an honor it was for "Amra Kojon", when the show ended with standing ovation from the audience! We were greeted with a cheering crowd just applauding and rushing over to shake hands to congratulate us. We did it! Against all odds that seemed so enormous at times, we finally made it happen!

We landed back in the U.S. with great pride and satisfaction as we look forward to a promising future ahead. Taposh Da always says, if you dare to dream, you might as well dream big, dream beyond limits and that's exactly what he had sought out to do. Many times we took one step forward and two steps back, but we kept going. It was not just the moment when I stepped on the stage, but the entire experience of so many of us flying across the ocean on the same flight, all of us staying under the same roof, singing "O amar desher mati" and feeling the same rush, anxiety and satisfaction, that made everything worthwhile, and turned it into a lifetime of priceless experience.

- Pusha Karim,
on behalf of Amra Kojon

Friday, May 04, 2007

Prepping to tour London!

Pictures from the last AK rehearsal before going on the London trip: