Check out Sneha Khanwalkar’s first mic moment
One of the Hindi film industry’s youngest and most-discussed music directors remembers her first mic moment
MUMBAI MIRROR (July 29, 2012)
Memories can be tricky. And, when you are angling hard to fish out those going back to when you were five, it can get particularly challenging. I don’t remember which poem I was reciting at this function, but I do recollect that we were celebrating Independence day at the Digamber School in Indore, and I was in Class I.
To me, this photograph is special in how it stands for one of my earliest memories of taking to the stage, talking into the microphone and performing. It takes me back to a time when I was fearless, oblivious of being judged, and isolated from all pressures of delivering a good performance. As children, our innocence allows us to be like that.
I studied at this school till Class II, after which my family shifted residence. To the extreme left in the photo is the school principal Sudhakar madam. The gentleman in the blazer, next to me, was her husband. So, it would safe to refer to him as Sudhakar sir, I guess.
Since I was short, I was usually made to stand in the front row at group singing events, inadvertently placing me closest to the mic. So when we would sing a prayer like Itni shakti humein dena daata, I would excitedly wail ‘Daataaa’ into the mic, and my loud, siren-like voice would fill the room, drowning out all the others. I was a happy-go-lucky child who didn’t care about which audience member was laughing.
Later, I grew reticent, especially during my early teens. I felt like I was being judged whenever I was made to sing in front of a bunch of people. When my cousins and I would perform at family functions on my parents’ insistence, we would stand straight-faced and sing a Lekin or Rudaali kind of song. What followed was the ‘music-aversion’ phase, about which I have spoken enough in press. This picture, however, is untouched by those limitations and boundaries. It only speaks of the joy of performing — something I love losing myself in, even today.
— As told to Anand Holla
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