Bottles, chairs, palms and even shoes... everything carried a musical connotation on Sunday evening when all roads led to Mahabalipuram for one of its largest and passion-driven music performances, A.R. Rahman’s first-ever in Chennai after his Oscar win, at Marg Swarnabhoomi near Kalpakkam on Sunday and for a cause.

The event, billed as a crowd-puller, drew thousands of Rahman’s fans and pulsated to the Oscar-winner’s music.

Before Rahman hit the stage on the overfed grounds, the crowd rehearsed their jig to gyrate to his music.

As the performer made a dramatic entry by appearing from a glittery box, the audience pumped their fists into the air and the excitement was more than palpable.

‘Kalpali,’ a song from Rang De Basanti served as a laidback starter. He went on with a a couple of hits from Shivaji and clearly it seemed to be the wisest choice.

Bollywood buffs were treated lavishly by singers Hariharan, Sadhana Sargam and Benny Dayal.

After rocking fast numbers, a series of melody, rock and crossover hits followed. As the evening grew thicker, raucousness was clearly in the air. When Rahman sung the ‘Adhiradhi dhan’ from Shivaji, the crowd’s cheers nearly drowned his voice out.

Tamil songs were clearly the winners of the evening. Yet, it was Hindi melodies that carried the emotional resonance. With an apparent relish, Rahman led the way for many others singers who belted his all-time hits.

The troupes swayed the crowd with melodies but later switched gears to alternate between racy numbers and evergreen hits. Both had equal takers. Guys and girls tapped their foot in sync for the music on stage.

Rahman’s characteristic way of acknowledging the frenzied crowd with an unruffled nod was enough to crank up the volume of his fans’ vocal chords. He strutted around the stage very little.

An intense performer, Rahman showed no signs of weariness and his smile stuck to him till he rounded off the show.

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