Anxiety was hitting its highest rating for me while thinking about the fact that I have requested for few tickets for the audio launch of the famous movie Uttama Villain starring Kamal Hassan. Not until the penultimate day of the launch I got two tickets for the show. Though disappointed with only two tickets for the grand event, I did not have to waste too much of my energy in persuading my wife for not getting the extra two tickets for my kids. After seeing the label “FANS” printed in bold in the tickets, she became slightly apprehensive of coming to the launch though she would have loved to.
I had to look for a companion finally when she said that she is not coming for the event. I had a look at the extra ticket and whispered to the ticket “Don’t know who is the lucky person who would get this ticket”. Count down started on 28/02/15 and I was getting more curious about the launch. It was my first experience to witness such an event in the cinema industry and since I am a very big fan of Kamal my expectations were very high.
1st of March 2015 unfolded as yet another day. I geared myself up for the mega event and for a show starting at 6pm, I was told be present in the venue by 4:30pm. I packed my backpack with some biscuits, drinks and snacks and set out to the venue on time. Reaching the venue on time I drove myself towards the parking lot and all along I could see big posters of the grand event along with some guidance to the people who have to park their vehicles. Signboards were reading “FANS”, “MIP” and “SPECIAL INVITEE”.
Made my way towards the parking area for the FANS and parked my vehicle and took a stroll towards the entrance. Since I was more curious, I walked down to see the entrance for the MIP and the SPECIAL INVITEE. I could see some flashy cars already parked and some others were just coming in. Looking at the buzz which was happening at the site, I quickly made my way towards the entrance for the FANS. There were fans who were taking photographs in front of the big banners and some who had come alone resorted to taking selfies with their heroes. I am for one who do not fantasize too much on those and therefore ignored it and walked towards the huge crowd standing to make their way inside.
Entrance for the fans was very poorly managed and I could see at least 5 to 6 big queues converging at one point. Scared of such a sight I was contemplating on the evolutionary theory which talks about the “Survival of the fittest”. I put myself into that acid test and quickly learned the secret of moving towards the entrance without any effort from me voluntarily. Yes, I was taken automatically by the pushing crowd towards the entrance with much ease. But this was certainly not the feeling for the female fans who were along with me. Felt sad for them and bad about the organizers for such a poor arrangement.
Nevertheless, finally made my way towards the auditorium and quickly scrambled for the vantage point from where I could have a good view. But the fans were too fast and quick than my brain. Before I could make a decision, I found myself without much choice because some of them were reserving seats for their friends who were standing so far behind in the queue. Well, glad at least I got an aisle seat which was clear of any obstruction. Quickly called my family to say that I am safe and sound and well seated inside the auditorium.
At that point of time, the stage was definitely non-impressive without any lights and sound which made me wonder whether this was the grandeur which was harped in the media lately about the launch. Slowly got myself busy by looking around and observing the number of cameras, other technicians, bouncers, organizers and the jubilance of some of the fans who were really ecstatic about the whole event. This is something which can be described only on witnessing and not by mere words.
Program was supposed to start at 6pm I was told and the glitz and glamour slowly started to build up when the technicians started doing their final testing of all their equipment’s. I was enthralled by the extraordinary transformation of the main stage when the lights came up in all directions along with some audio visuals (AV). I felt so happy and proud that I was being present there at that time. I could quickly guarantee myself that I am in for a grand gala night. Few minutes of the testing done by the crew put everyone in a fix. Meantime, the celebrities started making their way to their designated “SPECIAL INVITEE” area. I was still busy observing the even unfold in front of me and sincerely missed my family who could not be present with me.
Anticipation and expectation of the whole crowd including me was soaring to great heights whenever there was the background theme music played so loud in the auditorium. All of us were sticking our neck out to see if somebody is treading on to the stage. Time was ticking and it was close to 6pm when the auditorium was almost to its full capacity.
Sharp at 6:15pm, the show started of with a beautiful introduction given about the person who was about to compere the show that night. It was none other than Parthiban who a lot of them knew would steal the show by his extraordinary talent of speaking so witty and poetic. None of us knew the program schedule or the sequence of events. It was indeed a unique experience to be part of the huge fans of Kamal and observe their sincerity and devotion to their hero. The highlight of the whole show in my opinion was the special AV which was shown which was written by Mr.K.Balachander and narrated by the man himself who is the guru of Kamal.
The AV was so well made and I can be cocksure that nothing can bring you that moment unless if you were present LIVE to see the succession of events which were unfolding. It was indeed such a mind-blowing narration and the contents of which were speaking so high about Kamal and his dedication to the industry and his work. Parthiban during the introduction, rightly worded it by saying that this was the “WILL / UYIL” given by Kamal’s guru. Probably the AV would have gone for 4 minutes or so and the final slide of which was a very colloquial and a casual phrase from K.B with his smiling photograph. The whole auditorium erupted with a big applause from the crowd when the AV concluded. Emotions were running so high after the AV and no doubt that the genius deserved all the accolades he has got so far.
Suddenly, the huge LED display opens right in the middle and to all of our surprise Kamal was standing in a black suite with all his humility in a hands folded fashion. It was just too spontaneous and the whole auditorium just rose up with a deafening applause and gave him a standing ovation to the man who has achieved so much in his career and still craving for more. It was such an emotional moment for all of us and words could not simply describe that moment of the night. One has to be there to simply experience it. Recorded relays of that particular moment will be no match for witnessing the moment in person. For a man who has seen the pinnacle in everything (literally everything) I wonder what he would have felt at that point in time. Obviously he was also emotional as one could see when the many cameras zoomed on him and projected the visuals on the big LED’s placed in the auditorium. The whole auditorium was simply electrifying at that point of time.
I can simply conclude this blog right here even though there were many interesting events which happened thereafter. But I would feel very guilty If I do not mention the reciprocating act by Kamal in acknowledging the wishes from his guru by dedicating a poetic reply which was again world-class and very moving. This not only showed his prowess in the Tamil language but showed the true bonding he had with his guru.
Show was a stupendous success excepting for some lapses by the organizers in managing the crowd.