• Monday, December 22, 2014

Freedom in the air

TELEVISION OF A LIFETIME

COLORED BY SEASONS

Faridur Reza Sagor

Continued from Vol 01 Issue 38

Group Song: Notun Kuri 1978
Group Song: Notun Kuri 1978

Private channels produce variety of magazine programmes renting auditoriums, whereas if they were allowed to use the auditorium at Rampura BTV, those channels would've produced many technically good programmes. It is true that private channels often claim that they are doing something for the first time, actually BTV or Pakistan TV Dhaka had done it already. In 2005, almost all private channels pronounced that they are looking for talents. Some were looking for stars, some for talent with beauty and some with title like, “Bangladesh is looking for you”.  BTV is silent about these claims. Whereas since 1966, when BTV was only telecasted in Dhaka city only had programmes looking for new talents.
From the very beginning, children's programmes were the most popular shows on BTV. There was tremendous dedication for children shows and Mustafa Monowar was the sole reason. Still, without any rest, he is running varieties of programmes for television. Two puppet characters, has been entertaining children for more than half a century. The number scripts written for Bagha and Mini was huge ­– if they were compiled into books it would've been books of many volumes. Mustafa Monowar didn't pay much attention into publishing than putting a show on TV. Even book publishers didn't offer anything.
Most of the early children programmes were hosted by Mustafa Monowar. Although, the first children show on Dhaka television was hosted by Ekhlas Uddin Ahmed. One of the children who participated on that show was Razia Imam, wife of G.M. Alim Imam, a TV Staff. In his programmes, Mustafa Monowar always tried his best to entertain children with very less resources. He himself was an artist, and he wanted children to learn to draw from an early age. He proved that good show can be done just playing with easel and brush. He used to make shapes with paper cuttings – he wanted creativity to blossom from an early age.  He wanted more children to get involved in creative arts.

Mustafa Monowar
Mustafa Monowar

Once VTR machine came to BTV, Mustafa Monowar produced a programme called Ritur Ronge Anka (colored by seasons). Bangladesh is the only country in the world with six seasons. These six seasons have their unique texture and color. It was the days of black and white television, but Mustafa Monowar presented the six colors of six seasons in such style that everyone appreciated the show, even foreigners. Child participants of Ritur Ronge Anka grew up to be renowned dancers.  It was Mustafa Monowar, who realized the need of next generation of talents and understood that a competition is needed. There could be activities other than education like: reciting poem, singing and dancing competitions. Mustafa Monowar was unique with ideas – there were no Indian Idol or any other idol to copy from. He planned a competition programme for children to bring out their talents. That is the reason the then Pakistan television always had a series of children's programmes.

The writer is Managing Director, Channel i
To be continued...
(Translated by Zia Nazmul Islam)

Published: 12:00 am Saturday, May 24, 2014

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