Hakuna Matata enthralled the audience with Broadway musicals and Hollywood hits

Lights dim at the Stanes School auditorium , filled with music lovers who have gathered to witness an evening of nostalgia. Singers from Chennai, trained under Trinity College of London, enthralled the audience with Broadway musicals and Hollywood hits at Hakuna Matata, organised by Coimbatore Art and Theatrical Society. As the red curtains went up, J.W. Johnson, associate of the London School of Music and trained in music theatre, walked on to the stage and sang ‘If I Was A Rich Man’ from Fiddler on the Roof. His ringing voice carried across the hall. He enacted the hoity-toity socialite lady when he sang, ‘If I was a rich man, I would have a wife who struts like a peacock’.

Up next, Ania, Afia and Tanya, between six and 11, urged us to live the Hakuna Matata, the problem-free philosophy way, as they danced, singing this popular number from The Lion King.

The children enacted Simba, Timon and Pumba. Saujanya and Shalini danced to the soulful instrumental music of ‘My Heart Will Go On’.

Who can forget the funny flower seller immortalised by Audrey Hepburn in My Fair Lady? Sixteen-year-old Sithara Santwan sang ‘Wouldn’t It Be Loverly’. She recreated the raw accent of Elisa Doo Little as she sang ‘All I Want Is A Room Somewhere’. Little Ania sang the ‘Edeleweiss’ from Sound of Music.

Romance was in the air when Johnson hummed the Elton John hit, ‘Can You Feel The Love Tonight’, from Lion King. The naughty nun, Maria, rushed to our minds when Hannah Elliot, a voice trainer and choir conductor, sang ‘I Must Have Done Something Good’ from Sound of Music.

Sithara Santwan was the angry Eliza Doolittle as she thundered “Show Me!” from My Fair Lady. She stomped on stage and clenched her fists as she said how she wanted someone to just show her and not talk about their love for her. Her rendition of ‘Blah Blah Blah’ from Delicious about a lady who forgets the words of the song for her beloved was hilarious. The singers were accompanied by Pratibha Santwan on the piano.

Hannah Elliot amazed the audience as she rendered the song ‘Glitter and Be Gay’ from Candide, an operatti-based on Voltaire’s French novella by the same name. The song was a soliloquy by a lady who was mistress to two men. Hannah captured the hysteria as her voice broke into the maniacal laughter that was woven into the song. The final hahaha had the audience applauding her.

Uma Rani, trustee and faculty at Coimbatore Music School, who came along with her students said that that it was a great learning experience . ‘We make it a point to expose them to all kinds of music. It helps them to learn what their forte is.”