Fatema Tuz Zohra, one of the leading Nazrul singers of the country, will perform in several TV programs to celebrate Nazrul Jayanti (birth anniversary of the national poet Kazi Nazrul Islam). She has a live performance at Uttara Club slotted up for the evening as well.
She found some time to share her thoughts with Prothom Alo regarding the changing nature of Nazrul Jayanti.
You must be very busy with Nazrul Jayanti.
Yes. I am leaving for Bangla Academy shortly, where I have a performance lined up. From there, I’ll go to BTV to record some Hamd-Naat.
Did you ever attend any birth anniversary celebrations of the poet when he was alive?
No, I didn’t get the chance. However, I was always kept informed about how his birth anniversary has been celebrated.
In recent years, a number of events have been arranged to celebrate the day. What’s your take on that?
Nazrul Jayanti celebration has been completely redefined. The festivity is very fitting, I think this is the way a national poet’s birth anniversary should be celebrated. I even performed in a few events arranged abroad to celebrate Nazrul Jayanti. It’s a very positive sign – it goes to show that study of Nazrul is increasing in our country.
What are the tell-tell signs of the increase of Nazrul study in Bangladesh?
I am wholeheartedly involved in our music scene, so I get to experience the interest firsthand. A lot of youngsters love Nazrul songs, and they are very eagar to learn it properly. They can sing maintaining the authentic tune of Nazrul. Now we have some newfound notes as well thanks to the Nazrul Institute.
Tell us about the Nazrul Jayanti celebration closest to your heart.
To celebrate the poet’s 100th birth anniversary, the West Bengal government arranged a celebration of epic proportion. A two-story-high stage was set up in Tala Park, where Nazrul used to reside. The poet’s statue stood right beside the stage. His daughter-in -law Kalyani Kazi attended the event, and she hugged me. Thousands of people attended the event.
What are your plans regarding the future of Nazrul songs in our country?
I’ll keep singing, promoting and spreading Nazrul songs. I plan to groom new artistes as well.