Music Maestro A. R. Rahman To Work With Blessy On ‘The Goat Life’

Music maestro A. R. Rahman has expressed his deep joy working with director Blessy, whose latest venture ‘The Goat Life’ is all set to hit the theatres on March 28.

The film is being released in Hindi, Malayalam, Tamil, Telugu, and Kannada.

Speaking about his journey in the film, Rahman said, it is an honour to work with such a passionate man as Blessy, who believes in cinema, goodwill, stories and humanity.

“Working with him taught me so much because he is a very patient person. I want to thank you for coming and supporting us. This movie is a story of all of us, we are all struggling in some kind of way,” said Rahman, who was in the city here coinciding with the music launch of the film.

“For some people the struggle is internal, in the movie, the struggle of the hero is being trapped in a desert, but still, a lot of people are relating to this. Returning to the Malayalam film industry, I personally feel like I have come back home. Coming back in this way for such a special movie with such great people to support this, it is such an honour, and it has been a very interesting journey,” said Rahman.

Talking about the music of the film, the hero of the film Prithviraj Sukumaran said he had the privilege of working in two films that Rahman sir had composed.

“Both the films had amazing music, but, I have done over 120 films and I do not remember another time when I have heard the score of a film after having done it entirely and then wished that I had the score with me when I was acting. I wish I could hear the music before each take now, but that is the process of cinema, you don’t get to do that. I would like to thank you for what you have done for the film, you are as big a character as Najeeb is in The Goat Life. It’s an amazing piece of work,” said Prithviraj.

The film is based on the novel ‘Aadujeevitham’, one of the most popular best sellers ever from the Malayalam literary world, which has been translated in 12 different languages, including those that are foreign.

Penned by noted writer Benyamin and it follows the true story of the life of a young man Najeeb, who in the early 90s migrates from the lush green shores of Kerala in search of the fortunes in a land abroad. (IANS)

Yoga Will Improve Reproductive, Sexual Health

Yoga is an ancient method of relaxation, exercise, and healing that has gained a wide following across the world. It rejuvenates the mind, body and soul. It may come as no surprise, then, that yoga may also serve to enhance sexual function. According to a study published online in The Journal of Sexual Medicine (Nov 12, 2009), regular yoga practice improves several aspects of sexual function in women, including desire, arousal, orgasm, and overall satisfaction, points out Dr Arockia Virgin Fernando, Fertility Specialist, Obstetrician and Gynaecologist at Cloudnine Group of Hospitals. The expert shares some benefits of yoga on sex life and during pregnancy. Benefits of Yoga on your Sex life More and more people are discovering the benefits of practicing yoga, from building strength to relieving stress. 40 percent of women with fertility related issues have anxiety, stress or both. Yoga and mindfulness exercises like deep breathing helps in reducing the cortisol levels in our blood which is a marker for stress. High levels of cortisol damages the fine balance between the hormones which control the brain, heart and reproductive system. Many fertility groups who conduct support group meetings to help the anxious couples trying to conceive- have included yoga in their program. It can improve your sex life. Here’s how: Yoga can target your sexual zones. Many forms of yoga refer to the root lock “Mula Bandha,” which is the root of the spine, the pelvic floor, the perineum. Bringing awareness to these areas in a yoga class will help you be more in touch with them overall and can help you enjoy having sex more. In the challenging physical postures such as downward dog, chatarunga, supta konasana and plow pose, engaging Mula Bandha actually helps lift the pelvic-floor muscles, which increases core strength, which then functions to support and protect the spine. Engaging Mula Bandha can help with balance in postures such as warrior 3 and crow pose. You’ll feel better in your skin: Yoga is a series of physical exercises and postures that are geared toward improving one’s flexibility, strength and balance. A regular practice helps to strengthen, and tone your body, and all of these will make you feel better about yourself. Improved self-thoughts about your appearance will boost your body confidence and self-esteem. All of these will help you boost your personal life. Yoga helps reduce stress and anxiety: By transferring focus and attention to breathing and the body, yoga can help to lower anxiety and release physical tension. Lower stress levels at the end of the day can lead to feeling better about being with your partner. If you are not worried about other things and feel mentally balanced, you are more likely to want and be able to give to your significant other. It will allow you to relax and enjoy sex, which makes it even better. The calming, toning practice can be a wonderful escape from the stressors of daily life, while increasing your flexibility and strength to boot. This will also bring increased relationship satisfaction along with improvements in sex life and intimacy levels. It brings overall satisfaction, better communication and trust among couples along with the overall reduction in stress and anxiety. Yoga can increase the beta endorphin hormone release from the brain which gives a sense of well-being, improve immunity and prevents infections in turn increasing our reproductive health. With better hormone balance, there is increased sexual desire and reproductive function, also an increase in sperm production. Regular yoga practice may improve the interaction between the brain and the reproductive system in both men and women. There are many positive and negative feedback systems in our reproductive endocrinology and even a subtle imbalance disrupts the whole system.With better hormone balance, there is increased sexual desire and reproductive function, also an increase in sperm production. Yoga indirectly improves the reproductive health by improving immunity and thereby decreasing infections which damages the vaginal, tubal and uterine bacterial flora and thus preventing pregnancy. It increases the success rates of Assisted Reproductive Technologies like In vitro Fertilisation and Intra uterine Insemination by reducing the stress levels; thereby improving ovulation and sperm production. Women with high levels of stress biomarkers like cortisol have less chance of conceiving during ovulation and also an increased risk of miscarriage. Therefore Yoga can play a major role in these people. Breathing, meditation, asanas can reduce pain levels in people suffering from painful periods and pain during sexual intercourse, thus in turn increasing the odds of conception. The beginners should focus on breathing and poses which are comfortable. Above all it is safe. The key is to start slow. Benefits of Yoga during pregnancy Yoga helps you in dealing with the symptoms of pregnancy like morning sickness and mood swings, ensuring smoother and easier delivery, and faster recovery after childbirth. So, if you want to make your pregnancy and childbirth a peaceful and easy journey, you must go for a prenatal yoga class during and after your pregnancy. Look for a prenatal yoga programme where you are comfortable with the activities, style, and the yoga class environment. Always remember doing “Lamaze” which is a simple breathing yoga techniques, it always encourages you to be active throughout your pregnancy and increases your sense of wellbeing. All the exercises should be started pre pregnancy so as to have the best result during pregnancy. Do not start exercise for the first time in the first trimester except the breathing exercises under the supervision and consultation of your gynaecologist/ fertility expert. (IANS)

Rahman: Composing music doesn’t have any formula

Oscar and Grammy-winning Indian composer AR Rahman feels composing music is a thing of the heart, and the whole album of “Dil Bechara” has been carefully curated and is filled with memories of late actor Sushant Singh Rajput. The entire music album of “Dil Bechara” is done by Rahman. “Composing music doesn’t have any formula, it is a thing of the heart. When I write songs, I let them breathe for some time and then present it to the director,” Rahman said. “It was a great experience collaborating with Mukesh Chhabra on this film; his enthusiasm is infectious. This whole album is carefully curated because the film has so much heart, and now, memories of Sushant. It was a pleasure to work with lyricist Amitabh Bhattacharya on this soundtrack of love. The songs are eclectic and feature an amazing lineup of India’s top singers and musicians. I hope you will like the album,” he added. The entire music album of the film was released on Friday. The soundtrack to “Dil Bechara” comprises a diverse mix of songs. The film’s title track, sung by Rahman, is a vibrant celebration of life’s ups and downs; “Maskhari” is a lighthearted song about friendship, features Sunidhi Chauhan and Hriday Gattani on the vocals. There’s also Shreya Ghoshal and Mohit Chauhan’s “Taare gin”, “Khulke Jeena Ka” (an adaptation of Rahman’s unreleased Tamil track “Kannil oru thali”). “Main tumhara” is sung by Jonita Gandhi and Hriday Gattani. “Dil Bechara” is the official remake of 2014 Hollywood romantic drama “The Fault In Our Stars”, based on John Green’s popular novel of the same name. Budding actress Sanjana Sanghi stars opposite Sushant in the film. Casting director Mukesh Chhabra is making his directorial debut with the film. Talking about the music of the film, Mukesh said: “Befitting the story of the film, its music album is an emotional rollercoaster of romance, friendship and the odds pitted against two young people in love. Having A.R. Rahman aboard for the music of my directorial debut is a dream come true. What’s amazing about the genius of Rahman in this album is that it beautifies the narrative and takes it forward. I can only hope that the listeners enjoy it.” Sushant’s last film “Dil Bechara” will premiere on the OTT platform Disney+ Hotstar on July 24. (IANS)

AR Rahman in the race again at 89th Academy Awards

Music Maestro AR Rahman has done India proud again by making it to the nomination list of Oscars in the Best Original Score category for the film Pele: Birth Of A Legend. This time around, he is competing with 145 others in the same category.

Also, the song Ginga from the same film, has been shortlisted in the Original Song category along with 91 other songs. Rahman, who earlier registered a double Oscar victory for his music in “Slumdog Millionaire” in 2009, has been included in a long list of 145 scores in contention for a nomination in the Original Score category for the upcoming 89th Academy Awards.

“Ginga,” Rahman’s acclaimed number from the 2016 biographical film, is in the Oscar race too. It is part of the 91 songs, which are competing for a spot in the final nominations for the Original Song category.

The initial list of contenders for both the categories were released by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences on its official website on Dec. 13. Final nominations for the 89th Academy Awards will be announced on Jan. 24, ahead of the presentation ceremony, which will take place on Feb. 26 at the Dolby Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center in Hollywood.

In 2009, Rahman was honored for his Best Original Score for “Slumdog Millionaire,” and also for the Best Original Song “Jai ho” from the same film. The track has lyrics by Gulzar.

Rahman started his journey in the music industry by composing scores for documentaries and TV shows before he got his first movie break with “Roja” in 1992.

Since then, he has composed soul-rendering music in films such as “Rangeela,” “Taal,” “Dil Se,” “Jodhaa Akbar,” “Swades,” “Rang De Basanti,” “Rockstar,” “Jab Tak Hai Jaan” and “Raanjhanaa.”

He got his first international break when Andrew Lloyd Webber invited him to compose music for the Broadway musical “Bombay Dreams,” which won him immense fame. He also composed for the stage adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s “Lord Of The Rings” that premiered in Canada in 2006 and in London in 2007.

In 2014, Rahman’s work in Hollywood movies like “Million Dollar Arm” and “The Hundred-Foot Journey,” and Indian film “Kochadaiiyaan” was also among the Oscar contenders. In 2011, Rahman had received two nominations for the 83rd Annual Academy Awards for his original score in Danny Boyle’s “127 Hours” as well as original song “If I Rise” for the same movie. However, he did not bring the golden statuette home.

Co-directed by Jeff Zimbalist and Michael Zimbalist, “Pele: Birth of a Legend” is based on the early life of legendary Brazilian footballer Pele. Meanwhile, Alex Heffes, who composed music for Indian filmmaker Mira Nair’s “Queen of Katwe,” is also included in both the categories for his compositions in the biographical sports drama film.

Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan holds anniversary celebrations in New York

Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, USA organized a marquee sit down dinner event on Sunday, 18th October, 2015 at The Pierre Hotel, Central Park, New York City. At this prestigious event a select few individuals who have excelled in their chosen fields and touched many lives were acknowledged and honored namely Founder Executive Director Dr. P. Jayaraman, Late Prof. Robert Goheen-Former US Ambassador to India (Past Chairman for 23 years), Mr. Harishchandra Mistry a renowned philanthropist and Musical genius Mr. A. R. Rahman.

Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, has been functioning in the USA since 1981 and is committed to the promotion of Indian culture and values through the media of arts, languages and literature. It has had a great impact on the local community – Indian and non- Indian, through its courses, lectures, seminars, concerts and publications.

Its founder, Dr. K. M. Munshi, always said that “India will once again be acknowledged as the Vishwa Guru – a superpower that embodies the ideals of “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam” – the global family and supremacy of “Dharma” which stands for moral and ethical values.

Bhavan, USA has entered the 35th year of serving the Indian American community of the United States on October 2nd. To commemorate and celebrate this milestone the Bhavan will be organizing several cultural, educational and literary events to spread the message of unity and harmony.

Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev, Dr. Deepak Chopra and Ms Chandrika Krishnamurthy Tandon presented very interesting symposium ”Ancient Wisdom in Modern Times”. Enthralling and in-depth discussion left the audience spell bound. Ms. Tandon who is a long time supporter of the Bhavan, a Grammy award Nominee-A humanitarian and astute businesswoman initiated the evening with melodious prayers to Ma Durga with students from New York University. Mr. Anurag Harsh a renowned performer and Mr. Manu Narayan (Bombay Dreams) kept audience on the edge of the seats. Ms Gayatri Devi and Mrs. Sanjukta Sen offered prayers to Lord Shiva –Rudrashtakam and Ms. Siddhi Vaishnav and  students of Bhavan’s Nartanrang Dance School  offered prayers to Lord Ganesha.

Bhavan’s former Chairman and Current President of Trustee Committee Dr. Navin C. Mehta conducted the whole evening with grace and aplomb.

Chairman Mr. H. R. Shah welcomed everyone in his opening speech and was delighted to see former Bhavanites joining celebrations.

Prime Minister of India, H.E. Mr. Narendra Modi and External Affairs Minister-Government of India, Hon. Mrs. Sushma Swaraj sent their good wishes on the occasion. Governor of New York state Hon. Andrew Cuomo and New York City Mayor Hon. Bill de Blasio, Consul General of India-New York, Ambassador Mr. Dnyaneshwar Mulay, Secretary-General’s Special Adviser on Myanmar Ambassador Mr. Vijay Nambiar, Sant Shri Morari Bapu, Shri S. P. Hinduja with whose support Bhavan started functioning and host of dignitaries wished Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan on this occasion.

Evening was most memorable for the rich cultural content and poise of the dignitaries and honorees. Bhavan expressed her gratitude by thanking all the sponsors, supporters and volunteers for their overwhelming support and response.

Discovery Channel to premiere 90-min exclusive on AR Rahman

Discovery Channel is set to premiere ‘Jai Ho’, an exclusive 90-minute programme showcasing the spectacular journey of music maestro AR Rahman, spanning two decades and around 130 film scores, and his contribution to catapult Indian film music to the world stage.

Directed by National Award winner Umesh Aggarwal for the Public Service Broadcasting Trust, ‘Jai Ho’ will be aired by the Discovery Channel on Monday, 26 October at 9 pm. The Oscar-winning composer said initially, he did not find it “necessary” to have a documentary based on him, but later director Umesh Aggarwal convinced him.

“There were lot of offers before to do a documentary on me, but I felt it was not necessary. And after the Oscars and the brouhaha happened, I felt that people could get some kind of inspiration with my life through the journey of my life, through the way I’m making music,” Rahman said.

“And then Umesh, an award-winning filmmaker, contacted me and he said that initially it was only for the consulates all over. It was the kind of exposure which was good, but I didn’t know that all this would happen,” he added. However, the composer added that he “cannot watch myself”.

“People living abroad and having the Indian flag, they deserve to know about the people of India. I didn’t know it’ll come out charmingly like how it’s made. I cannot watch myself and hate to watch myself,” he said.

Discovery Channel to premiere 90-min exclusive on AR RahmanAggarwal said that it’s the first “definite feature” on Rahman. “I am confident that this film will convey his astonishing success and global phenomenon,” he said. Shot across the world, the film includes interviews of Aamir Khan, Danny Boyle, Mani Ratnam, Gulzar, Ashutosh Gowarikar, Shekhar Kapoor, Subhash Ghai and composer Andrew Lloyd Webber among others.

Through ‘Jai Ho’, viewers will also get an access into his personal life and his journey right from his coming together with Mani Ratnam for ‘Roja’, his first ever commercial, his Bollywood debut with ‘Rangeela’ to his versatile and successful work in films like ‘Dil Se’, ‘Taal’, ‘Rang De Basanti’, ‘Lagaan’, ‘Highway’, ‘Rockstar’ and ‘Raanjhanaa’, amongst others.

Rahman’s name figures foremost in the world of music whenever and wherever India is mentioned. He gave the music in Danny Boyle’s ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ and bagged his first ever music Oscar for India. The program also offers the viewers a window into his personal life including emotional moments like leaving school at the age of nine, getting his first pay check, marriage and record celebrations and more. The viewers will directly hear the double Oscar and Grammy-winner talk about all this and more.

Discovery Networks Asia-Pacific EVP and GM- South Asia Rahul Johri said, “Discovery Channel is delighted to offer viewers an inspiring program on the life and journey of the music legend AR Rahman. We are committed to present the comprehensive image of the enchanting India – its remarkable landscapes, achievements, culture and its laudable icons to viewers across the world.”