A true professional and a gifted artist, it is rare to see AR Rahman excusing himself from a performance. However, when a long-held dream is being fulfilled even maestros can find themselves at loss for words, or in Rahman’s case, for music.
The Mozart of Madras opened his cherished KM College of Music and Technology in Chennai on the occasion of Eid on Friday in the company of close friend Mukesh Ambani, the chairman and managing director of Reliance Industries Limited, and his wife Nita.
And he was so overcome by emotion that he excused himself from the scheduled performance, putting the focus firmly on his two babies – the newly-opened college and a performance by his son Ameen Rahman.
Other than Ameen, the event saw a scintillating performance by the faculty members Adam Greig, Hratsjuhi Aramian, Gilles Denizot, Brian Clarkes and Anantha Krishnan and an enthralling qawwali by a group of students from the institution.
Nita Ambani, who spoke of the close ties between her family and Rahman ever since the musician’s Roja days, told the students to work hard and with dedication. “If you have true passion, hard works becomes a great joy and the students of this college have the potential to become AR Rahmans of the future,” she said.
In an inspiring speech, Mukesh Ambani lauded the humbleness of the true genius. “AR Rahman is India’s ambassador to the world and he is also the ambassador of humility,” Mukesh Ambani said.
A man of few words, Rahman thanked his mother, sister and faculty of the college in his short speech.
The college will offer a wide range of education in music. The college also houses the KM Music Conservatory which Rahman opened in 2008 to identify and mentor young musicians.
The mission of the college is to discover, educate and empower the next generation of music professionals. The college will also house the Sunshine Orchestra which will nurture talented children from underprivileged backgrounds. A studio on the premises will act as a training ground for students to gain invaluable industry exposure.