Bollywood action at Royal Palm
By Ayesha Javed Akram
LAHORE: Thursday’s up-and-down variety show of popular music and occasional misplaced humour from visiting Indian performers at the Royal Palm Golf & Country Club was entertaining in audacious Bollywood style.
Rumours that some of the Indian stars would be unable to perform circulated wildly, and were only laid to rest when Indian comedian Omer Shareef finally took the stage. Mr Shareef was on good form, his sarcastic humour carrying the more caustic Indian talk show host Sajid Khan, who made the audience observe a silence for the supposed death of an Indian film producer, only to mock them later for their ignorance.
Playback singer Babul Supriyo, of ‘Dil ne dil ko pukara’ fame, began the show and got everyone swaying with the duet ‘Yeh dosti hum nahin toroon gae’, sung with up-and-coming pop star Ahmed Jahanzeb. The lyrics were apt for an evening that saw entertainers from both sides of the border come together after a fifty-year hiatus.
Duo Jatin Lalit, the new-age RD Burmans, attempted a couple of nostalgic numbers seemingly against audience tastes and were followed by Shaan in sleek black-and-white, arguably the most popular playback singer in Bollywood. He was later joined by Pakistani pop sensation Ali Zafar.
Joined patriotism ran strong when actress Shilpa Shetty, in a snug tomato-red outfit, ended her first dance by dramatically swaying the Indian and Pakistani flags together. Actor Akshay Kumar stuck to his usual moves, with skimpily dressed girls being thrown up in the air and about the stage every two minutes. A technical fault provided an unexpected highlight, forcing Mr Shareef and Sajid Khan to entertain the audience in complete darkness, and many were entertained when a brawl on the lawns erupted into a full-fledged fight. Action, romance, music – the evening turned into a true Bollywood production.