FATHER OF KONKANI FILMS 'AMCHEM NOXIB', 'NIRMONN'
FRANK FERNAND NO MORE
- By Isidore Dantas
isidordantas at yahoo.co.in
Frank Fernand, the producer and music director of epoch making Konkani films Amchem Noxib and Nirmonn, breathed his last at the age of 87 in Mumbai on April 1, 2007 and was buried the next day at a quiet funeral at Dadar. He is survived by his wife Maggie, daughters Elfin, Doris, Larissa and son Max. Many Goan musicians have made it big in Hindi films, of whom Frank Fernand is one. Frank Fernandes, popularly known as Frank Fernand, was born on May 3, 1919 and hails from Curchorem, a small and dusty mining town and railway station now in the district of South Goa.
He was baptized by the saintly priest Fr. Agnelo de Souza.
Fernand received his initial training in music at the hands of the local maestro Diogo Rodrigues, where he could master violin and trumpet. In 1936, Frank migrated to Mumbai to join Don Bosco's for studies. His first assignment in music was to play at Green's Hotel and Taj Mahal Hotel under the leadership of George Theodore, an East Indian, as the community of Christians from the region of Bombay (Mumbai) is known.
In 1942, he left Mumbai for Mussorie to play at Savoy Hotel under the Rudy Cotton band. It is here that he got a good opportunity to be a Jazz musician in his band. The same year he had a brief stint in New Delhi.
Fernand is indebted to our statesman and India's first Prime Minister the late Jawaharlal Nehru for his Biography and Discovery of India, which completely changed his outlook. He considers Nehru to be the great Son of India and is grateful to him for the orchestration of the National Anthem Jana Gana Mana. A true patriot, Frank commemorated August 15 as the biggest event every year.
In 1946, he set for Mumbai to participate in Mickey Correia's band. The year 1948 saw him joining the film industry as a musician to the popular music duo, Shankar-Jaikishan. He proudly recalled his association with the success of R.K.Films' Raj Kapoor's super hit 'Barsat'. He has had the privilege to work under the music directors of repute. These include Kishore Kumar. C.R.Ramchandra, Roshan, and Anil Biswas.
His last assignment with Kalyanji-Anandji as his first assistant is fondly remembered by the Hindi Film music community. He has excelled in musical arrangement for these film music directors.
In the footsteps of the end of colonial Portuguese rule in Goa, in keeping with the immense love he had for Konkani and with the vast knowledge of film craft in his possession, he launched his first Konkani film 'Amchem Noxib' under the banner of Frank Films (Goa). It starred C. Alvares and Anthony Mendes in the main roles. Apart from being its producer, the film had melodious music composed by him. This film has cast a magic spell on the spectators and its immense popularity has brought him adulation and draws large crowds even today whenever and wherever it is released.
Some time back, he expressed his gratitude for the patronage received for this first film, which boosted his enthusiasm. However, he regretted that Portuguese- and English-speaking Goans did not appreciate the film and called it cheap. To counteract this criticism, he produced his second film, 'Nirmonn' based on Lord Tennyson's character Enoch Arden, for which he set music in his own style. This film had a powerful story and bagged the Certificate of Merit for regional films, the first of its kind for Konkani, at the hands of the then Prime Minister, the late Indira Gandhi.
This film had memorable performance by C. Alvares, Shalini, Anthony D'Sa and Jacinto Vaz. The lyrics and scenes have been beautifully captured on mementoes of the films.
'Nirmonn' was remade into Hindi and was entitled 'Taqdeer' and was directed by A. Salam with Shalini in the lead role. Besides these two films, Frank has also provide the musical score to the Konkani film 'Mhoji Ghorkarn' directed by A. Salam with Shalini, C.Alvares and Jacinto Vaz in the main leads. With the success of the two Konkani films, Frank ventured to produce a Hindi film in 1965 entitled 'Priya', starring Sanjeev Kumar and Tanuja with music by Kalyanji-Anandji. This film flopped because it was considered an art film by the audience and not a commercial one.
Not loosing heart, Frank again attempted to produce another Hindi film 'Ahat' starring Dr. Shriram Lagoo, Jaya Bahaduri, Vinod Mehra. 'Ahat' inspired by the popular English film 'Wait Until Dark' was made under the banner of Vishal Gomantak Films with screenplay by G.D.Madgulkar, Kishore Rege as director and music by himself. The film was over-budgeted and could not be released because the distributor was arrested under COFEPOSA. The film has not seen the light of the day.
Frank has set music to the lyrics of the popular Konkani poet Dr Manohar Sardesai's 'Fulam Zai', 'Sobit Amchem Goem', for HMV Recording Co for which he bagged the Bombay Journal Award. Cine Musicians has honoured him as founder and he was bestowed the Goan Review Award. His contribution can also be seen on Konkani discs, for which he has provided musical score. He has also staged tiatr entitled 'Bekar Patrao' in the eighties with first time introduction of a ten-piece orchestra.
He was the first to play classical as Jazz player, and Trumpet Concheto by Handel under the music maestro Victor Paranjoti. Audience still remember the concert he organized in 1958 where he played Evolution of Music, Jazz, starting with Negro Spirituals, Dixie Land Jazz followed by New Orleans Jazz, Sound of America commercial music, Symphony Jazz and Ravi Shankar's Caravan. Frank was suffering from the dreaded Parkinson's disease since 1985.
Konknni cholchitrancho jadukar
Goenkaranim songitan khub fank zoddloli asa ani hea khatir te sonvsarant fankarunk pavleat. Hachem xrei (credit) Goenche igorzank ani devllank favta, karonn adlea kallar teo kantar ani songitacheo balvaddeo (nurseries) zavn asleo. Hem purvichem proxikxonn gantthik bandun ani mon lavn vavr korun sonvsarache konxe te gattunk pavleant ani Hindi sinema udeog porzollunk tancho hat bhar asa. Frank Fernand hea oslea veoktintlo ek poilo voilo protinidhi zavn asa. Tannem nirmonn kelolim Amchem Noxib ani Nirmonn cholchitram tannim bosoilolea modhur songitak lagun namna zoddunk pavleant. Cheallis vorsam uprant pasun lokanche vonttar tem songit ozun khelltta, hi tachi vhoddvik. Konknni cholchitrachea sonvsarant zaitim filma ievun gelint punn hea donui filmanim ek vegllo zago rakhun dovorla.
Frankbabacho zolm Kuddchoddem ganvant Maiache 3 tarkher 1919 vorsa zalo. Bhoktivont Padri Agnelo de Souza hanche koddlean tankam Frank Fernandes nanvan bautism dilo. Songitachem mullavem xikop ganvchea mestiri Diogobab Rodrigues hanche koddlean tankam mevlem zoim to rebek, korno ani trumpet vazounk xiklo. Fuddlem xikop korpak tannem Mumboi dhanv marli ani Mumboichea Don Bosco xallent riglo. Mumboichea Greens ani Taj Mahal hottelanim vazoupak survat keli zoim unch kullieche prekxok (audience) chodd korun Parsi ani Khoja somazantle American Commercial songit aikunk posond kortale. Uprant to Mussorie pavlo ani thoim Savoy Hottelant Rudy Cotton Bandant vazounk laglo. Hanga taka jaz songitkar zavpak bhag mell'llem. 1946 vorsa to Mumboi portolo. Pandit Jawaharlal Nehrunche Discovery of India pustokan tanchi mansik vruti (mental outlook) bodol'li. Jon' Gon' Mon' hea raxttrgitachem vadheovrund (orchestration) kel'lea bodol te Nehrujincho vhodd upkari.
1948 vorsa Kongres sorkar sot'ter ietoch sorobondi lagu zali ani nachanche vosre rikame disunk lagle. Hea karonnak lagun Frank baban Hindi sinema udeogant uddi ghetli. Songitkar Roshan hanche adari koxe tannim panch vorsam kam pollelem. Raj Kapoor hanchea Barsat ani R D Burman chea eka filmanchea iesant tancho mottho hat asa hem te gorvan sangtat. Toxench Mangexkar bhoinninchea Moratthi filmanim tannem adar dila. Nimnne te Kalayanji-Anandji songitkar zoddieche poile adari mhonn vavurtale. Tanchem poilem pagar 250 Rupia aslem ani tem fokot rebek vazoupak.
Ponaxent A Salam, Ravi songitkar hanche borabor te, ek Hindi film kaddunk chinti. Punn durdoivan survatuch vankddi zali. Guru Dutt, Meena Kumari vangdda hero zanvk kosoch kobul naslo mhonnttoch hi ievzonnn fiskottli. Mogach Anvddo filmantlo LM Ratus ek Konknni film kaddunk sodi ani tea filmant Frankbab songit bosupak sanglem. Punn duddvanche oddchonnik lagun tem mukar vochunk na. Tache kanniecher adarit Amchem Noxib toiar korunk tannem hatant ghetlem.
Goenchi soddvon ani Konknnicho bhorpur mog hanche umedin Konknni filma kaddpak prerna mell'lli oxem to boddaien sangta. Amchem Noxib toiar korpak 1.25 lakh rupia khorch ailo ani Nirmonn filmank 1.80 lakh rupia khorch ailo. Nirmonn filma khatir Certificate of Merit favo zalem. Mhoji Ghorkan'n sinemank tannem aplem songit dilolem asa.
Hindi filmanim nanv zoddpak tannem, Govind Saraiya hanchea tenkean Priya film kaddunk chintlem zantunt taka 1.5 lakh rupia luskonn zalem. Uprant anik ek Ahat nanvanchem Hindi film kaddpak tannem hat ghatlo. Hem film nanvostea Inglix film Wait
Until Dark hacher adarit asa. Hea sinemancho khorch sumar 18 lakh rupia zalo. Tea filmanchea vitorokak (distributor) ottok kelolean tem bhair sorunk pavunk na.
Sinema xivai Bekar Patranv nanvancho tiatr tannem boroila ani tantunt poilech pavtt 10 vantteanchem vadheovrund (orchestra) aslem. Dr Manohar Sardesai hanchea Fulam Zai, Sobit Amchem Goem kovitank songit bosoilam zaka lagun HMV komponen taka Bombay Journal Award favo kela. Novea Konknni film kaddpeank te iesvont zatole zalear tench film Hindi bhaxent kaddchem oxi tachi budh asa kiteak Hindi bhaxent film pollovpi khub asat.
Frankbab Parkinsons piddent koxttovta. Tannem halinch 86 vorsanchi pirai huplea. Taka bori bholaiki ami anvddetanv.
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