Nearly 1,000 eager Hindi film song buffs made their way to The Hindu Friday Review Fest

“Mein kya jaanoon kyaaa jaadoo hai…..” sang Srinivas and there were big smiles all around, especially amongst the silver haired gentry in response to the K.L. Saigal number.

The anticipation for the evening's retro music show was palpable as nearly 1,000 eager Hindi film song buffs made their way into the Corporation Kalaiarangam to their seats.

The second day of The Hindu Friday Review Fest was as much a full house as the first day had been. And, rightly so. It was to be a show by artistes such as the immensely versatile and popular singers Srinivas, Chinmayi, Haricharan and Swetha Mohan.

The smiles widened with Srinivas' next song from Guide, the romantic Tere Mere Sapne. It is a wonder how many songs the audience remember.

It is even more amazing, that many of those who sang along, were not even a twinkle in their parents' eyes when the songs were composed.

Not surprising at all then, that these melodies of the 50s, 60s and the 70s are called ‘evergreen', ‘immortal' or ‘unforgettable'.

When Srinivas invited Chinmayi onto the stage to join him, she was welcomed with a loud cheer.

A national award winner who has just scaled new heights of popularity with her work for Enthiran, she launched into “Kuhoo kuhoo bole koyaliya” from Suvarna Sundari.

She built up the tempo with the semi-classical number and had done a good job of really warming up the audience by the time Haricharan came on to a huge round of applause and whistles. Haricharan has a formidable fan following at a very young age and he captured more hearts as he soulfully pleaded, “Abhi na jaao chhode kar” from Hum Dono.

Many women in the audience will remember how devastatingly handsome Dev Anand was in the movie. The foot-tapping Kohinoor number “Madhubane mein Radhika naache re” followed, and then came Swetha Mohan who cast a spell with “Raina beet jaaye” from Amar Prem. One more number from a Rajesh Khanna starrer, Aradhana followed as she was joined by Srinivas to sing “Kora kaagaz tha yeh man mera”.

Srinivas was just sensational as he shared anecdotes and information about the particular movie or song they were singing and it all made the experience even more nostalgic.

Each song was preceded by a tantalising intro by the orchestra that was simply splendid.

Half remembered tunes suddenly swam into focus, and as the penny dropped, people clapped in glee. Srinivas revisited the film Julie with Rajesh Roshan's “Bhool gayaa sab kuch, yaad nahin ab kuch….”

The magic continued with Chinmayi crooning “Aao huzoor tumko sitaron mein…” from Kismat.

A roar greeted Haricharan as he re-entered with a wardrobe change and stylishly rendered “Deewana huaa baadal” from Kashmir Ki Kali. Of course, you remember the fresh and beautiful Sharmila Tagore and the rakish Shammi Kapoor in it.

Space restriction prevents one from listing all the songs. There were 26 in all, informed an observant audience member.

Parichay, Aandhi, Howrah Bridge, Abhiman, Kati Patang, all made the list. So did Prince with the so-difficult-not-to-dance-to “Badan pe sitare lapete hue”. “Yeh kya hua” from Amar Prem was sheer magic as Srinivas sang it, complete with Rajesh Khanna-like gestures.

Swetha beautifully sang her favourite song “Baahon mein chale aa” from Anamika. And, the tempo got faster and more furious with Sholay's “Mehbooba mehbooba…” and the irrepressible “Dekha na haai re socha na” from Bombay to Goa.

By the end of the evening the audience was drunk with the songs.

And, when the foursome sang “Jai Jai Shiv Shankar” from Aap ki Kasam, some of the audience could not restrain themselves anymore, and surged out of their seats to dance.