Artistes and music lovers join hands at Bandra to protest the entertainment tax that has threatened the livelihood of musicians in the city
The mood at the Amphitheatre at Bandra was that of rebellion and of music.
The place was abuzz with activity as musicians and almost 100 other fans collected to agitate the revision in the entertainment tax in terms of a protest concert.
Musicians and their fans gather at the Amphitheatre at Bandra to show their solidarity and support to the cause of musicians
After MiD DAY had reported about the protest concert ('Politicians endorse tax-weary musicians,' December 11), scores of musicians and aficionados collected to show their solidarity and support to the cause of musicians.
The live music bazaar catered to every genre of music as artistes performed ghazals, English numbers to even some Spanish songs.
The show also tried to showcase the importance of music and created awareness among the listeners about the importance of live music in the city.
Live musicians from different schools, from Hindustani classical, to jazz, blues, country, soul, folk, funk, rock staged their own performance.
Music for a cause
Schubert Vaz, a 26/11-terror attack survivor and pianist was also present at the concert to display his solidarity. Vaz had also performed at a concert in Dahisar to protest the entertainment tax.
Dr Victor Rodrigues, a dentist, also performed at the concert to support the cause. "I am fond of music and apart from my profession I keenly follow music.
Looking at the plight of my friends who are musicians, I decided to come out and perform and support their cause. I hope the government wakes up and smells the coffee," said Rodrigues.
Music lovers also swooned to the notes of Dipak Sharma and his band that came out to support the artistes.
A chairman of a pest company from Altamount Road said that he only agreed to perform at the event because it was the need of the hour. Talking about the importance of live music, he said, "Music is my passion.
Whenever I get time, my friends and I sit back and jam together. We won't let music die and I think this concert was the perfect platform to voice our protest against the tax."
Benjamin D'souza who charmed the audience with his different renditions of Hindi songs and melodious ghazals mesmerised the crowd.
Though, he is not directly affected by the entertainment tax, as he prefers performing for private parties, he sympathised for those who were severely affected by the revision.
"I perform at private parties, but I can understand that if this new law is enforced, then hundreds of my comrades will be jobless.
Also, if they levy taxes on music, you never know when the government will start targeting private parties."
Bombay Entertainment Duty, 2010
Rs 2 lakh
Monthly charges for pubs in u00a05-star hotels
Charges for permit rooms, beer bars with orchestra
Rs 1 lakh
Monthly charges for pubs other than those in 5-star hotels
Rs 1.8 lakh
Annual charges for live performances
Thronging The Venue
Several fans and supporters swarmed to the amphitheatre in order to protest the tax. Dr Mukul Dabholkar said, "Long live 'live' music. We won't let the music die.
We will continue to support the cause and have also signed the signature campaign for the same. We will do whatever we can to save live music."
Echoing the same sentiments were Vivek Sundara, a resident of Carter Road.
"I, too, was a musician a long time ago and I understand the setback the entire industry will face with the enforcement of this law. They should not let music die."