Melbourne: Popular singer Sona Mohapatra took a packed auditorium by surprise when she was called upon the stage at the ongoing Indian Film Festival of Melbourne to give away an award and judge the long-standing and popular dance competition of the festival.
The singer treated the auditorium packed with the Indian diaspora, government functionaries, including ministers and members of parliament, and the city’s mayor with an impromptu act.
She crooned, a-cappella, the ‘Kuhu Kuhu Bole Koyaliya’, a duet sung by Lata Mangeshkar and Mohammad Rafi for the pan-India 1957 film, ‘Suvarna Sundari’, starring the legendary Akkineni Nageswara Rao and Anjali Devi. That was her tribute the late Nightingale of India, Lata Mangeshkar.
Talking about the experience, Sona said: “When the festival organisers discovered that I had collaborated with the legendary Aussie band INXS in a single called ‘Afterglow’, they requested if I could sing a few lines to celebrate India-Australia friendship.
“I found that the in-house symphony had a conductor who was a jazz musician and requested him to join with a violin. It was magical singing ‘Afterglow’ in the land of INXS. I chose to end this with a tribute to the passing of the Nightingale of India, Lata ji.”