Aditya Narayan reunites with his first singing costar Asha Bhosle

When last week 19-year old Aditya Narayan finally stood on stage to host Zee’s music-talent show Sa Re Ga Ma Pa, it was a moment of huge reckoning for him. The inimitable Asha Bhonsle was watching him closely.

Says Aditya, “I’m 19, and I agree I’m from a musical family. Also, I’ve had considerable experience on stage with my father. But to have stalwarts like Ghulam Ali and Asha Bhonsle watching me as I got a hang of my first full-fledged job as an anchor was an unsettling experience.”

“Ashaji and I go back a long way,” chuckles the affable Aditya. “I’ve been lucky enough to sing with her for A. R. Rahman in Rangeela and Taal as a child. Tell me, which kid has had this privilege. And now there she was in person smiling and observing me carefully.”

Ashaji found Aditya cute. That made the debutant anchor’s day and year. “When I had sung with Ashaji I was too young to know what it meant. But now, to have occupied the same space as her and to have her encourage me so warmly I couldn’t have hoped for a more auspicious start to my career as an anchor.”

To make Aditya even more nervous there was his father dropping in unannounced to check out how sunny-boy was doing. “If Papa had told me he was coming I’d have asked him not to. I knew I’d feel so self conscious in front of him! So he quietly finished recording his TV show Indian Idol and dropped in on our Sa Re Ga Ma Pa set to watch me from a hidden corner.”

Aditya feels blessed. “Ghulam Ali Saab, Ashaji and my father (Udit Narayan), it was as though the heavens were blessing me. Yeah, I think I’ll do okay as an anchor.”

— Subhash K. Jha

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