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