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September 11, 1999
Sabka Laabh Zindabad To Raise Money For Indian Charity
A P Kamath in Piscataway, New Jersey
Chetan Roy has published poetry and sung popular Hindi songs to raise money for charity. But early next month, he will be also known as a playwright. His Sabka Laabh Zindabad, a satire on Indian politics, will be one of the attractions at the third charity drive by Surbahaar. The October 2 event at the Piscataway High School, will also have old and new movie songs presented by singers in the New York tristate area.
"It is election time in India and many people here are interested in what is going on in India," Roy, who works at Salomon Smith Barney as a project leader in Equity Trading Technology, said. "So a play about Indian politics is very timely."
It is directed by Tina Nagpaul, a management associate with the E-Citi group in Citibank.
"The play focuses on the wheeling-dealings of coalition politics in India," Roy said. "It also highlights the difference between North and South, and the ludicrous nature of Indian politics today."
Surbahaar's first concert held in Manhattan raised $ 7000 for Pratham which helps educational efforts in Bombay and other Maharashtrian cities. The second concert, also in Manhattan, in April 1998, raised $ 20,000 for Asha.
One of the more prominent groups helping education across India, Asha has active members on many North American campuses. Surbahaar is holding a concert in November in aid of Child Relief and You dedicated for the welfare of children in India.
Surbahaar is made up of professionals and students. Many of them are contributing to the charity event.
It was started by a group of enthusiastic and artistically talented students at New York University in March 1998. Since then, its membership has risen from 20 to 50. It now includes a dance troupe and a drama troupe. Surbahaar hopes to raise money for social organizations through entertainment. It serves a dual purpose, allowing artists to express themselves, and it channels this creative output to aid a good cause.
The dances for the upcoming event are choreographed by Nipa Sheth, a practicing dentist in Hoboken, New Jersey. She has performed in 1997 at the Lincoln Center for the Lincoln Center Arts Festival. There will be a Rajasthani folk dance, and a dance choreographed to songs from Hindi movies. The dances will be on for about 20 minutes.
Lakshmi Rao, who is co-ordinating the songs, works at Morgan Stanley in the Institutional Equity Department. The songs will be mainly Hindi film songs with a smattering of regional songs. The songs span many decades and styles, starting with Aayega Aane Waala from Mahal all the way to Koi Mil Gaya in Kuch Kuch Hota Hai.
The evening is co-ordinated by Kalyanaraman Natarajan, an executive at Citibank.
For more information, contact Roy at (201) 217-1487
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