It’s common knowledge by now that Bollywood films are not just enjoyed by the Indian diaspora overseas. Even the local residents have been slowly warming up to the entertainment provided by our movies. With the advent of social media and WhatsApp, we have often come across videos depicting fans singing popular Hindi songs. When our celebrities go to foreign lands, half of the admirers waiting for them at airports or performance venues turn out to be non-Indians. A few years ago, the Hindi film business boomed in China thanks to Aamir Khan-starrers like Dangal and Secret Superstar. Whenever he goes there, the Chinese fans flock to see him from far and wide. It was also a surprise to see a couple of China residents who travelled all the way to Mumbai to catch the first day first show of his Diwali release, Thugs Of Hindostan!
In short, we have seen it all. Yet, when we chanced upon these videos posted by a Malaysian educational institute on its YouTube channel, we were left amazed. The first video clip we witnessed was posted by Management & Science University (MSU), situated in Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia, was uploaded in March this year. The occasion was the 24th convocation of the students and the MSU Choir team performed on two songs of Salman Khan-starrer Bajrangi Bhaijaan, ‘Tu Jo Mila’ and ‘Chicken Kuk-Doo-Koo’. The performance of ‘Tu Jo Mila’ is a bit serious and mellow as per the song’s feel. But for ‘Chicken Kuk-Doo-Koo’, the performers go all out and even perform the Chicken dance of Salman. The students witnessing the show are quite happy with some even replicating the moves.
The other videos of Hindi song performances were dominated by Shah Rukh Khan. The recent one, uploaded in May 2019, is of students performing on ‘Yeh Ladka Hai Allah’, from Shah Rukh Khan-Kajol–Hrithik Roshan–Kareena Kapoor starrer Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham. Another song of this 2001 Karan Johar starrer, ‘Bole Chudiyan‘, was also performed wonderfully by these students in August 2018. For their 2017 performance, they selected ‘Ladki Badi Anjaani Hai’ from Karan Johar’s first directorial venture, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai.
But the best reception to the performance of MSU Choir team is reserved for the songs of Dilwale. This 2015 starrer, starring Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol, was an underperformer at the box office but its songs have become quite memorable. In the beginning of 2016, MSU had two such ceremonies. For the January event, they performed on ‘Janam Janam’ while for the April convocation, they sang ‘Gerua’. The audiences too got excited when these performers began to croon ‘Gerua’. Some Indian-origin students could also be seen in the video in the audience who obviously are rejoicing upon seeing how songs of a Bollywood film have generated tremendous excitement in foreign shores.
For years, Bollywood was looked down even by a section of Indians for its song-and-dance routine. But seeing these videos will surely make you proud as to how our content is touching lives thousands of kilometres away. And that a prestigious educational institute is allowing the performance of Bollywood songs for their convocation ceremonies is like an icing on the cake!